Boomerang Consignment & Resale’s cheerful corner at 1247 Central Avenue. Courtesy photo
A ‘before’ photo of Boomerang’s location on Central Avenue. Courtesy photo
Six years ago, Anna Dillane began her Los Alamos Boomerang adventure by painting the interior of the premises. Courtesy photo
Anna Dillane has transformed an empty space into a vibrant store full of exciting merchandise. Boomerang celebrates six years in Los Alamos Saturday. Courtesy photo
Six years ago, on Small Business Saturday, Boomerang first opened its doors in Los Alamos at 1247 Central Avenue. Boomerang had been in operation in Española since 2002.
When asked how she came to open a second store in Los Alamos, owner Anna Dillane said, “A number of converging events led to the decision. I had lived here since 2005, but was terrified to open a store here due to the high rent costs.”
The rent in Los Alamos was more than double what she paid in Española.
That was until she met Kevin Holsapple, executive director of the Los Alamos Commerce and Development Corporation at that time. Holsapple urged Dillane to open a store in Los Alamos, she said. He was convinced that Boomerang would be well received by the community and that it would be successful. After weeks of his urging, Dillane finally decided to look at available real estate.
The very first potential location that Dillane looked at is the location the store now occupies. She met the owner of that property, Shannon C de Baca, who told her that she was committed to filling the vacant real estate that her father owned with small businesses that would serve the Los Alamos community. C de Baca said she was sure that a consignment store would do well in Los Alamos, Dillane said.
The next hurdle that Dillane faced was financial. As a single parent of two, she simply didn’t have the required capital to open a second store. The new location offered more than 2,000 sq. ft. that Dillane would have to fill! Once again Holsapple was essential in helping Dillane, she recalled, adding that he had experience with crowdfunding and suggested that Dillane ask the community for help.
Dillane put together what she thought was a big ask. She created a crowdfunding campaign where supporters could pre-purchase gift certificates for the new store. This was the best way she could think of to collect capital without asking for a handout.
The crowdfunding campaign was a huge success – raising more than $5,000 in 6 weeks. Dillane was able to use that money to pay the rent and deposit, purchase racks, displays, hangers and a cash register. Always a frugal person committed to recycling, Dillane purchased nearly everything used rather than new.
During the next five weeks she and her family worked tirelessly to transform a blank white canvas into a colorful and quirky space that would more accurately reflect the spirit of Boomerang. Dillane said she wanted people to know as soon as they walked in that Boomerang was unlike any place they had been before. She explained that she wanted them to feel transported into a magical land where people are kind to each other, where color and whimsy and a floating River can be embraced rather than feared.
Dillane said that quirkiness is a passion of hers, “Society has this way of trying to force us all to fit neatly into a box. I’ve lived my life trying to break out of that box and be my authentic self. Every day at Boomerang I try to encourage others to do the same.”
While Boomerang usually hosts an anniversary party on Small Business Saturday to celebrate with the community, of course this year is different. This year they will be closed to the public per the governor’s orders but will be available at the shop to take phone orders, do FaceTime personal shopping, and will even host a Facebook live shopping party 3-4 p.m. this Saturday, Nov. 28.
The link for the shopping party is: participatehttps://www.facebook.com/events/189546459381843
Boomerang invites everyone to log on whether or not they’re interested in purchasing anything.
When asked why Dillane would invite people who might not shop, she said, “Boomerang is so much more than a store to people. It’s a safe space, it’s fun, it’s a way of connecting with other people in a real way, and it’s a way to be inspired! We just want to see everyone! We miss them!”