DIXON – Letha Catalina wants people to find a unique style and feeling for their home.
From photography and local art to dried flower arrangements and candles, Catalina has stocked up her new shop Chickweed Cottage at 204 W. First St. with a variety of home goods.
“I search for very unique things that a person might not come across. I want people to find things they can really enjoy and have an opportunity to transform their home.”— Letha Catalina
“It’s been a dream forever to have a store with home decor,” she said. “It’s always been in my thoughts.”
About 12 or 13 years ago, Catalina was giftware manager at Snyder’s in Dixon where she became proficient with display, ordering and helping people pick things for their home. It was then that she thought about having her own shop.
Having her artwork featured at The Next Picture Show motivated her to further pursue art and creativity. When she entered her first show, she won a first-place ribbon.
“It was a huge inspiration,” she said. “They really encouraged me.”
She’s striving to give customers a cozy cottage feel where they can look around and say, “Oh wow.”
“I search for very unique things that a person might not come across,” Catalina said. “I want people to find things they can really enjoy and have an opportunity to transform their home.”
She said it’s about showing people how different colors and textures can be displayed, how things can accent their personality and how items can be great conversation starters.
“I think so many people always say that they’re not creative, and I want to give them the chance to see that’s not true,” she said.
The cottage formerly was an extended space and children’s area for Books on First, but its new life as Chickweed Cottage opened last week. The store is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. It’s closed on Monday and Tuesday.
“Dixon has been so nice and welcoming; other business owners were really supportive, and people kept stopping by to say how excited they are,” Catalina said. “I couldn’t be happier.”
Originally from Oregon, Catalina moved to Dixon with her husband, Chris, in the summer. She’s been a stay-at-home mom for the past 8 years with her youngest daughters, Raina and Evelyn.
Her photography has been featured at an art show in the fall at the Crystal Cork, as well as this year’s art festival in Grand Detour.
“With being artistic, there’s no boundaries,” she said. “There’s just freedom for your mind to create. It’s an incredible feeling when artwork makes people connect to it in their own way.”