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Meet Mary Wiggins and Chris Getto of Chris + Mary in Santa Monica

Today we’d like to introduce you to Mary Wiggins and Chris Getto.

Luck started it all! Chris’s last business was forced to move from Westchester to Venice in a temporary spot. Mary happened to be leading a yoga workshop at this same space one weekend. This chance meeting started it all… falling in love and ultimately creating their little shop. They were also extremely lucky to know a large group of insanely creative artisan friends to feature in their shop. They were lucky to live only a couple blocks away from their space and able to jump on it when they saw that for lease sign go up in the window!

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Heavens no! We’re just two years in and are constantly reassuring ourselves that we chose the right time/place for our shop. Being a small business owner is no joke. We are one of the shop pioneers of Pico Blvd and believe in its potential, but sometimes it’s tough not being on a more shopping-friendly street. We get a ton of driving traffic but not enough foot traffic. Lo/Cal coffee shop just a few doors down and the Saturday Santa Monica Farmer’s Market across the street really help. Lunetta All Day (fantastic restaurant) opened up a couple blocks away. Whole foods 365 opened this past year down on the corner as well! Most recently we heard that local owners of a space down the street in the other direction are opening up a furniture and lighting shop too! People used to come into the shop and ask us how we thought we’d make it in this location. We’re just starting to get customers coming in and saying, “What a great location for a shop!”

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Chris + Mary – what should we know?
We are a husband and wife duo striving to keep the art of handmade/small batch alive – a literal mom-and-pop shop in Santa Monica. We support and represent artisans, makers, and designers near and far, sharing their stories and missions with our customers. We live four blocks from our shop and believe in supporting other local, small businesses and working together for the collective good of our community and world. We offer a wide variety of goods from jewelry, art, home goods and clothing for the whole family to unique vintage finds and hand-written stationary. Everything we carry is hand-picked and ethically sourced. Many of our makers support charities or foundations as well. Unlike many stores, we carry a large diversity of items but not a large stock of any. We also carry some handpicked vintage items, blending some old with the new.

Our physical space is different than most too. We used repurposed pallets to make shelving and a faux wall. We painted the ceiling sky blue and hung handmade clouds. A local carpenter hand carved and painted our signs. Our goal was to create an earthy, warm and inviting space. We think we did it… and hope you agree!

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
Balanced tenacity! Being a small business owner can mean little to know true “time off” and never completely being “unplugged.” We believe it’s super important to take time for self-care and to do the things that make us feel connected and supported so that we can be our best for our business and customers.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:

Cortnee Brown

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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