Oak City Hustle
We “Bead” You Farewell

We “Bead” You Farewell

Ornamentea Bead Shop has been a staple in our downtown Raleigh community for 14 years. Unfortunately for all you crafters and artisans, they will be closing their doors for good this spring. Owners, Cynthia Deis and her husband will be moving on to other ventures. Usually, the first question asked is why? That question was recently posed to Cynthia by a local T.V. station, but they didn’t like her answer. With leading questions, they tried to bait her into saying something that would fit the article they were trying to write. Many locally owned business have recently been closing downtown, and they wanted to convey the thought that she was closing because her rent was too high and couldn’t afford it anymore. That is the farthest thing from the truth and hurt Cynthia deeply. She had to send emails and post on social media to try and clear up this false idea. We wanted to give her the opportunity to give the real story in her own words to set matters straight.

ornamenteaIf you have ever owned a business, you know you always have it on your mind and are working six or seven days a week. Even with that type of hectic schedule, you love it and are passionate because it is your dream. Cynthia’s love for beads and all things crafty is what started this journey but as she plainly states, “I loved it, then I didn’t. It was literally that simple. I don’t know if it’s burnout, my age, I don’t know. But at a certain point, it stopped being this fun artwork for me. It became this thing that I was doing that turned into work.”

Now, what about the report of their rent being too high? Her landlords the Outlaws, are a local, second generation family business. Cynthia enthusiastically describes the family as, “Super, super nice people”. Before she moved in, the Outlaws ran their family business at that location. “They loved the fact it was a family business going in where they had their family business.” Over the years, they would even tell Cynthia that they were getting offers on the building. She had nothing to worry about though because they were not selling. It was obvious that keeping a locally owned family business up and running was more important than money to them. “Even when property taxes went up they didn’t increase our rent”. She related story after story of how great the Outlaw family has been to her. “They would never kick us out.” she firmly stated. That is why when the other report implied that they did, it hurt her and the Outlaw family. She had to call them and apologize profusely to set the record straight. In reference to that interview, Cynthia says, “I was being asked leading questions. The interviewer would say ‘It must be really awful to be priced out of this building’, and I would say no, I’m not priced out. That’s not the case at all! I really tried to stress to her that this was about me not wanting to do this. Not about my landlord raising the rent.” It was just time for her and her husband to move on and that is it.   

With a scratchy voice and a tear in her eye, Cynthia wants everyone to know, “I have loved this, loved my customers, and loved what I have done. This has been my creative work, my labor of love and my artwork. But at a certain time, it’s time to do something else. It makes me sad but also makes me happy with the possibilities.” With a new life ahead, she will be able to spend more time her children, tend to her garden, care for her chickens and do more personal creative work. We thank you and your husband for loving the Oak City as much as we do and wish you the best!


Peter Fradella

Pete is always where the action is in Raleigh. Owner of Redirect Photography and chronicler of what's good.

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