Terri Wells, owner of La Trouvaille: Antiques and Afterthoughts, 3400 Ryan St. in Lake Charles, hopes to bring area shoppers something different without them having to travel elsewhere to find it. (Rick Hickman / Special to the American Press)
Last Modified: Tuesday, November 12, 2013 11:25 AM
The inspiration for creating “La Trouvaille: Antiques and Afterthoughts” was from owner Terri Wells’ countless years of being exposed to the antique world.
“My mother had an antique store in Jasper, Texas for many years, so I guess it’s instilled in me to hunt for the timeless treasures,” Wells said. “I felt my love for the old and unique, plus the eye I have for display and decorating, I could bring Lake Charles something different without them having to travel elsewhere to find.”
How did you come up with the name? What does it mean?
A lot of thought went into choosing the name for our store. I knew I wanted it to be of French meaning. One night of brainstorming amongst a group of friends, which one spoke French, we came up with La Trouvaille. Meaning, “the find,” just felt appropriate for what the business was about. Everyone loves “the find” when antiquing.
What sets your business apart from others like it in Lake Charles?
I feel what makes La Trouvaille unique is that we offer such a variety of items. We have furniture that ranges from Victorian to primitive. There is one-of-a-kind home décor accents from the past and also newly repurposed ones for the present. This is a store that both men and women can enjoy.
Where do you get your merchandise?
Several times a year Lloyd and I go into Texas and hand pick our merchandise. It’s usually five days of serious “junking.” Being in this type of business, people will call wanting to sell items from estates, and anytime we travel, we are always in the hunt mode. Needless to say, our inventory is acquired from all over.
We have more than 4,500 square feet of merchandise that is forever changing. Dealers who have been in the business for many years like Kiss A Fat Dog, Urban Habitat, Gypsy Treasures, to name a few, take pride in finding the most unique items to fill La Trouvaille with. I also enjoy the hunt for an item that we might not have. Just add it to my list, and I will seek it out. Customer satisfaction from finding that desired piece is very rewarding to me. We will have a very large area at Flea Fest on Nov. 16-17, 2013, at Burton Coliseum with items that have not been offered at the store yet.
What are your price ranges?
We offer merchandise that fits into everyone’s budget. Affordable handmade jewelry from vintage pieces to furniture that is purchased and passed onto our customers at the best price we can offer them, is a few examples of how we pride ourselves on our prices. I feel like everyone should be able to afford something from the past to keep history alive.
What are your most popular items? What do you get the most feedback or inquiries about?
We never know what people are looking for when they come in. I find the most popular things that sell are items that reminds people of their childhood. Whether it be that vintage Cosco stool that was in their grandmothers kitchen to the rustic tool that was in their grandpa’s shop. Younger age people are buying more antique furniture these days. They like the fact that its affordable, well built and unique. One of our biggest sellers is CC Caldwell Paint. Repurposing and distressing furniture is a big trend now.
Send your Businesswise suggestions to Lance Traweek, American Press, P.O. Box 2893, Lake Charles, LA 70601; or email suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org .
• Location: 3400 Ryan St. Right
• Owners: Terri Wells and Lloyd Lauw
• Services provided: Retailing antique furniture, décor, vintage jewelry and clothing.
• Hours: Wednesday thru Friday 9-5:30 and Saturday 9-4
• Years in Business: 10 months
• Phone: 564-6855
• Email: email@example.com
• Website: “Like” us on Facebook to see our new merchandise, specials, and paint classes offered.