It’s the most wonderful time of the year … Christmas! One of the first things that comes to mind when you think of Christmas is the decorations. And nothing is more iconic than the tree with just the right combination of garland, tinsel and, of course, the perfect ornaments. Ornaments can add just the right touch to your tree, and Barn White carries hundreds of unique and beautiful ornaments.
Barn White was begun by three women, Sadie Friedrichs and her two daughters, Page Moore and Leslie Ewers. The iconic white barn fronted location on 10th Street in McAllen opened its doors in 1988. It began as a retail gift, bridal registry and home décor business, and still continues in that tradition more than 30 years later.
The Christmas Season
One of their favorite times of the year is Christmas. Each year in mid-November they host their two-day Holiday Open House to kick off the holiday season. It’s a time to shop for gifts and decorations and enjoy the festivities. “It’s fun for everyone to dress up and get ready for the holidays. Plus, we have great customers. They are all friends with each other, and it makes it a really fun time,” said Ewers.
A staple at their Holiday Open House is jewelry designer Andrea Barnett. Ewers and Moore first met Barnett at a small show in New York shortly after they opened. They invited her to show and sell her pieces at the open house, and as they say, “The rest is history.” Barnett, with a couple of exceptions, has been a part of the Barn White Holiday Open House since the beginning. “I truly enjoy this event. I’ve been coming for years, and, because it’s a smaller place, I’ve been able to meet and get to know some great people,” said Barnett
At first glance, when you walk into Barn White, you see a cute store with pieces that would be great décor for your home or the perfect gift for a friend. The magic happens when you walk past their main counter to the back room. In this room, there are rows upon rows of glittering, eye-catching ornaments. Handcrafted beauties from the Christopher Radko collection adorn their walls year round, but during the Christmas season especially, the feelings of nostalgia and tradition are at their peak.
Ewers explained how Barn White first started their signature ornament room. “Christopher Radko was just starting out when we started our business. He had 12 ornaments hanging on a door in a showroom in Dallas. We saw them and loved them.
The next year, we bought some and hung them on a velvet piece on our door, and that’s how it started for us. We’ve just kept growing with him every year.”
It doesn’t stop with just selling those gorgeous ornaments. These pieces evoke special memories for people and create traditions to cherish. On occasion though, these fragile pieces do break. Several customers have been known to bring them back to the store, where one of the Barn White employees can work her magic. She takes all the pieces of those broken ornaments and puts them together to recreate new things and keep the memories and tradition alive in a new way.
Friendships = Family
Not only is the business still owned and operated by the same ladies, they employee a loyal team of women who bring that homey, welcoming touch to the business. When you walk into the store, you know you are always going to be welcome, and you’re most likely going to make a friend or two. Long-time employee Susie Harrison said, “You couldn’t pay me enough to work somewhere else. The ladies here are family, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.”