Two women open new shopping experience in Honesdale

Honesdale. Alessandra Iavarone of The Velvet Maple and Olivia Santo of Gather re-opened the doors of 1019 Main Street to launch a collective vendor space, which they call a 'modern department store experience.'

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  • Alessandra Iavarone at The Velvet Maple (Facebook photo)

  • Some of the wares at Gather (Facebook photo)

Two local business owners have joined forces to open a new shopping experience in the former Milkweed space located in downtown Honesdale.

Alessandra Iavarone of The Velvet Maple and Olivia Santo of Gather say they recently re-opened the doors of 1019 Main Street to launch a collective vendor space and bring to the community its first modern department store experience.

On the first floor is Gather, which offers curated gifts, barware and kitchen items, men’s clothing, gourmet and local food, and children’s gifts.

The Velvet Maple, which re-located after a successful three years from across Main Street, is a lifestyle shop offering women’s clothing, accessories, home décor and furnishings, and interior decorating services.

“We wanted to create a department store feel by having each room of the building carry a different product category,” said Olivia Santo. “It’s really a one-stop shop.”

“There’s something for everybody here,” Iavarone said. “A man can shop downstairs for a new shirt while his wife is busy trying on a dress upstairs and the kids are playing with toys in the children’s section. It’s a fun shopping experience when every member of the family can feel entertained.”

Experts in fashion and interior design

Santo is a young entrepreneur who grew up in Northeast Pennsylvania. She attended the Fashion Institute of Technology and worked as a merchandise planner for Macy’s before moving back home to start up her first business venture.

Iavarone, a Brooklyn transplant originally from Rome, Italy, is an interior designer specializing in local hospitality and commercial projects. She currently owns and operates two locations of The Velvet Maple in Honesdale, Pa., and Narrowsburg, N.Y.

Gather and The Velvet Maple are located at 1019 Main St. in Honesdale, PA and are open every day except Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

For more information contact Santo at 718-887-4374 or

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