With a chuckle, Dena Peterson— a best friend to Deborah Anderson— said she believes the late Gwendolyn Wikstrom, who is Anderson’s sister, whispers things to Anderson when she is setting things up at her new store in Karlstad.
This comment got a laugh out of Anderson and she said, “When I’m (price) marking things, it’s almost like she kind of helps me out a little bit because she kind of says, ‘Not too high, but yet you got to get something too for it.’”
Gwendolyn Wikstrom passed away five years ago, but her memory lives on throughout the space of a new store called “Whispers of the Past,” a store open along Main Street in Karlstad and connected to the North Star News building.
“The influence that we got (to open this store) basically was because of our sister, Gwendolyn Wikstrom,” Anderson said. “Because she basically wanted to do a store someday in her lifetime, so this is more of a tribute to her because everything in the store is hers.”
Anderson did add how everything in the store is Gwendolyn’s with the exception of some quilts.
Anderson and her friend Peterson talked about this store— one that is filled with antiques and various other things. They also discussed the name, the process of preparing this store, and what to look forward to in running this store.
Anderson and her other sister Kathy Glines own the store. Currently, it’s open Monday through Thursday from 9 am to 5 pm. As they continue to finish unpacking boxes and putting up things within the store, Anderson is allowing people to come in and purchase things. She said they are looking to have a soft official opening in potentially November.
So what is exactly in this store? It includes various things of the antique and non-antique nature. Inside, one will find furniture, a tiger oak fireplace mantle, tiger oak library tables, lamps, an oak icebox or old fashioned-refrigerator, Red Wing Crocks stoneware, Native American pieces. It also includes various other things, such as Pampered Chef cookware, figurines, tupperware, napkins, stuffed animals, books, fabric.
“She (Gwendolyn) had a very good eye for antiques,” Peterson said, “and she picked beautiful things.”
Glines did much of the designing of the store’s indoor space. This store was empty for many years, previously having served as the Main Street floral years ago. Peterson said this space was a disaster when they started work inside of it.
Today, the store has a main large space— an area that includes mostly antiques. The store also has three side rooms, including a sewing room, the library/music/art room, and the children’s room. This final room is filled with toys, stuffed animals, children books and clothing, and blankets. It also includes a bed, giving it a design that looks much like a child’s room.
These rooms and this store space reflect more than just Gwendolyn’s interests.
“Her interests was so diversified. She loved the sewing part of aspects. She loved books. She loved the kids books. We got so many kids books,” Anderson said. “She just really loved everything about it. And then she, my sister, was a very generous person also. She was very giving. She bought and she gave a lot.”
To see the complete story, read the October 14 issue of the North Star News in print or online.