April Glass closes as the Internet takes a bite out of sales

April_Glass_sign_03

The owner of April Glass has decided to close her store and leave the brick-and-mortar retail business for good.

Patrice Lee, the owner, is currently holding a closing sale at her 43-20 40th Street location. Once the items—consisting of gifts, frames, jewelry and artwork– are sold she will close the store and focus on Internet sales.

“To do a brick and mortar retail business with profit is not easy,” Lee said, adding that it getting harder as consumers continue to buy online. “When I heard the latest Internet sales figures, I knew it was time [to close].”

Lee said she will continue to conduct some of her business online and is planning to wholesale some of her own jewelry through stores.

April Glass has been a Sunnyside fixture for more than a decade.

Lee launched the business in 1996 when she started to hand paint glass items in her Celtic Park apartment and sell them wholesale at showrooms. She then operated out of a small office in the Celtics and began dabbling in retailing, before making the move to Queens Blvd.

Lee operated April Glass at 44-09 Queens Blvd from 2003 through 2011. She decided to move to the 40th Street location two years ago to lower her rent.

In an e-mail to customers on Friday, Lee wrote:

“It has been a pleasure serving you!   To all of you who followed us, and continued to support our efforts in Sunnyside, we want you to know your business has been greatly appreciated!”

April Glass and Sunnyside

The former April Glass location

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16 Responses to April Glass closes as the Internet takes a bite out of sales

  1. Local Hamburgler

    So... does she have a website now? An Etsy store?

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  2. Don't blame me, I voted libertarian

    That's a real shame to see this store go. I think it might have had a better chance with a spot on Skillman near 46th.

    Hopefully they will do well on the internet.

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  3. Krissi

    AW poop. I liked this store. I totally agree with Don't Blame Me, they would have done better on Skillman.

    I used to go there regularly when they were on Queens Blvd cause it was so convenient, but I always forget that they are on the corner.

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  4. KathyG

    I loved this place - it was my "go-to" store for unique gifts. So sorry to see her close up shop, and look forward to her online venture.

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  5. sm

    Liked this store too immensely, but became on the "fringe"/"outlier" of streets I walk through in Sunnyside with its new move. Skillman would've been better.

    In any event, wish the owner(s) well, and looking forward to on-line purchasing!

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  6. TheAnnoyingHipster

    If this neighborhood was as "hip and trendy" as the Hipsters would have you believe then this store would have survived.

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  7. Oppressed Masses

    I always enjoyed doing Christmas shopping at April Glass. It's a shame a truly unique, local shop is closing. God Bless.

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  8. Sunnyside Native

    @ Don't blame me and @ sm - They tried to rent the empty store near Juan Calvo's laundromat, between 45th Street & 46th Street on Skillman Avenue, and again, the landlords wanted WAY too much for the rent on Skillman Avenue. They couldn't swing it, so they moved to 40th Street. Both Ladies are really nice and so are their two little doggies that hang out in the store with them. They would always allow our dogs in the store with us when we shopped. Then at Christmas, when she had the Santa Claus there, she made sure we knew Santa's picture taking was for dogs too - not just kids. I will make sure to go there before they close and I will always be their forever customer!

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  9. Sycamore

    Sorry to see this go. Good luck.

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  10. Don't blame me, I voted libertarian

    Perhaps if there were some locally-oriented street fairs in the neighborhood then merchants like April Glass could at least afford to rent a booth for little money and be able to sell their wares a few days of the year.

    Sad to hear that April Glass wasn't able to get that place on Skillman, they would have complemented the other specialty boutiques and upscale eateries very well on that block, benefitting everyone.

    The local landlords sure are infuriating. They must all be waiting for some deep-pocketed corporate tenants like Chase Bank or Starbucks to rent their place.

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  11. Sunnyside Native

    It is sad for sure. I loved buying specialty gifts for people there and I loved all their Christmas items when they were on Queens Blvd. I must admit, I was never a huge fan of all that aromatherapy stuff, but I would even just stop in to say Hello to Sue and Patrice..and their dogs -Max & Lottie! Will miss seeing them!

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  12. alicia z.

    I love this store it had great gifts ! we need more places like this i woodside & sunnyside! good luck to the ladies!

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  13. Claudia P

    I am sorry to hear that.
    I always visited the store, on both locations, during
    the holidays.
    Beautiful, unique and great price gifts.
    Patrice Lee is a great supporter of Sunnyside's community in general.
    April Glass will be missed. Good luck to you.

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  14. Get a Life

    Sorry to hear this. I hope they do well online. I hate to see a unique store close. Couldn't they share space at another store?

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  15. 86Mets

    When someone who is on the board of directors of the local business improvement district can't even save their own business, then something's wrong.

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  16. Native NYer

    Store will be missed, I went there quite often when they were on Queens Boulevard. When they moved to the side street, I didn't get there nearly as often. Will look for them online.

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