Astoria Fashionista Opens Shoe and Jewelry Boutique on Ditmars Boulevard

By Jeanmarie Evelly on August 20, 2014 10:23am 

 The Brass Owl will open in September at 36-19 Ditmars Blvd. selling shoes, jewelry and accessories.
The Brass Owl will open in September at 36-19 Ditmars Blvd. selling shoes, jewelry and accessories.
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DNAinfo/Jeanmarie Evelly; Inset logo: The Brass Owl

DITMARS — An Astoria resident with a background in fashion and retail is planning to open her own boutique in the neighborhood soon which will specialize in shoes and jewelry.

"Those are two of my passions," said Nicole Panettieri, who will open The Brass Owl in September at at 36-19 Ditmars Blvd.

Panettieri, 34, said she decided to open her own place after a career that included working as a buyer for Macy's and a shoe buyer for Ross Dress For Less.

"I kind of thought it was time the make the jump, and Astoria seemed like the perfect place," said the first-time business owner. Her parents have a boutique that sells flip-flops in Florida while her family operated a shoe and shoe repair store for decades in New Jersey.

"I always kind of had it in the back of my head that I would open a small business because of my family," she said.

The Brass Owl will sell shoes, including brands like Steve Madden and Chinese Laundry, as well as what she described as "unique" jewelry, plus other accessories like handbags and scarves.

She described the store as "mid-retail fashion" in terms of affordability, with jewelry pieces ranging from $20 to $100.

"I'm not competing with Payless and I'm not competing with Bloomingdale's. I'm kind of somewhere in the middle," she said.

The Brass Owl is slated to open Sept. 13. The shop will be closed on Mondays, according to Panettieri. 

"It's going to be good finds," she said. "It's going to be a fun environment."

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