Deborah Orgel-Gordon has wanted her own gift shop since she worked as a teenager in the jewelry store her mother managed.
More than two decades later she sits behind the counter of a spacious store stocked with merchandise she handpicked as she prepares for her grand opening.
"If I don't do it now..." Orgel-Gordon said with a smile.
It's been less than a month since she and her husband celebrated the of their on Glen Head Road, a stone's throw from the new Gem Craft Boutique.
As social media manager for her husband's office, Orgel-Gordon can handle most of her responsibilities online while she runs the gift shop.
"I've gotten very good feedback that the area needs a gift shop like this," she said.
Orgel-Gordon's personal touch is evident in many of the store's details. A belief in supporting her local community led her to seek out several local artists whose products she features, like scented soaps made by a Sea Cliff woman.
Most items have some defining characteristic, like handbags made from recycled magazine covers or soda can tabs. The shop is low on cheap, mass-produced accessories - though prices stick to the $5 to $200 range.
"I would rather see people leave with multiple items than just one thing," Orgel-Gordon said. "If it's affordable it can make more people happy."
Her merchandise includes costume jewelry, retro candy, party gifts like quirky bottle openers and gag gifts and any other products which catch her eye.
The environment of the store owes itself to its owner's years of living in Manhattan, where she said she enjoyed the unique selections of small independently-owned shops which she is recreating in her own town.
By a twist of fate, the building she moved into has beige-painted tin walls covered with a fleur-de-lis pattern - the same symbol she and her husband chose to represent their realty business.
"We love New Orleans," she explained.
Gem Craft Boutique is open Tuesday and Wednesdays from 11 - 5:30, Thursdays 11 - 7, Friday and Saturday 10 - 6, and will open Sundays after the summer.
Saturday's grand opening will feature refreshments and live music by a Sea Cliff musician from noon to 4 p.m.