Window Shopping: The Curiousity Shop

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

The Curiousity Shop is all about quality and quantity.

The Clintonville jewelry store, full of second-hand treasures, offers lots of both - with a healthy dose of the fun and funky.

"I have everything from four karats in diamonds down to plastic," owner Lou Slowek said. The store specializes in costume jewelry, and lots of it.

About 12,000 pieces fill a dozen waist-high display cases that form a maze inside the simple shop.

Slowek has found the best way to organize all that jewelry is by color, metal or stone, creating a rainbow effect as you walk through. Signature pieces and lots of long, loop-able necklaces hang from hooks and on displayers along both walls.

One thing is certain: Nothing's new. If a style looks contemporary, it's because it's come back into fashion again. For the most part, there's no two of the same item on display.

And some things look far from modern, because mixed in with more recent pieces there are necklaces, brooches and cufflinks from the 1800s and early 1900s. They're not labeled as such, but Slowek is happy to point out these relics, as well as designer pieces.

"I've got Trafari, Monet, Kramer, Coro, Austrian pieces," Slowek said. "Name a designer, I probably have an example of it here."

Jewelry, watch and clock repairs and restorations are a big part of The Curiousity Shop's business. Slowek used to work the antique show circuit.

"I started buying pieces so I'd have parts to work with," he said. "And then I go, 'Oh, this is too nice to tear up, I'm going to set this aside.' And before you know it, I had ... enough to open up a store."

Slowek, a Columbus native, opened The Curiousity Shop in Olde Towne East 10 years ago and moved it to Clintonville five years ago.

And now, the jewelry and parts come to him. He takes in whole pieces and the littlest of parts for resale and to use in repairs. Sellers get a store credit in exchange.

To get things cycling though, Slowek and his staff feature slow-to-sell pieces of all prices in a "Weekly Wonder" basket, where everything's priced at $5.

The Curiousity Shop

3387 N. High St., Clintonville


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