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BUSINESS BROOKLYN STYLE - The Hutch: Your gift HQ

Weddings, graduations, barbecues, bridal showers, baby showers, and get-togethers are on the horizon all summer.

Shop local, and save money on gas, says Donna Hazzaz, owner of The Hutch gift store (8016 Third Avenue, 718-748-4574). “Help the economy, and pay no tolls,” she says. You don’t have to travel far to buy unique gifts for everyone on your list because, “We have something for everyone, whether your price range is $2 or $2,000,” she says.

The Hutch happens to be a fun place to shop. That’s because she and Holly, who has been part of the staff for years, make it that way. They’re always smiling, and are very people-oriented. I know because for years I was one of those last-minute shoppers who arrived on Christmas Eve, about an hour or so before closing. Yet, Donna, Holly, and the rest of the staff always made sure the atmosphere was festive and fun, and that I left with gifts that impressed. The wrapping alone awed the recipients, and incredibly, this wrapping is still provided at no cost to the customer.

What’s also nice is that the store specializes in accessories that are not massed-produced. “When you pick something off a shelf, it won’t have fifteen of the same item right behind it,” says Donna. Shop here and you won’t have to worry about returning items because the recipient already received the same gift from someone else.

This past June 9th marked the 44th anniversary of The Hutch. It’s been part of the Bay Ridge community for that long. Help celebrate by coming in to see the new line that focuses on our borough. It’s called “All Things Brooklyn,” and features scenes from the borough, created by a small group of local artists. You’ll find jackets, T-shirts, bags, and hats, made of denim. There are pillows and ornaments, too. All products are made in the U.S., says Donna. This is a great way to show pride in both your country and your neighborhood.

Also new for this season is a Michael Aram line, who is designing for Waterford Crystal, says Donna. You’ll find china, stemware, barware, metal, crystal, and porcelain. “It’s very exciting,” she says of the unique and beautiful pieces you’ll find displayed.

The Hutch has also introduced an Italian leather pocketbook line, by Sharon Gioe, who has been featured on shows such as HSNBC. This collection is specially priced for the Hutch, she says.

Come in, browse, and discover all The Hutch offers. Shop on Fridays this summer because at The Hutch, it’s known as “Cupcake Fridays.” On these days, they’ll treat you to a complimentary cupcake, then, you can treat yourself to something special at the shop. To make the day even sweeter, they’ll give you a coupon for $10 off every $25 purchase, says Donna.

Staples you’ll find at The Hutch that everyone loves include Lladro porcelain figures; Herend porcelain and dinnerware; tableware; Department 56 accessories; Snow Babies; Royal Worcester, Lalique; Kostaboda Swedish crystal; and Dickens villages.

The Dickens accessories are on display all year ’round, she says, because “brides register for them.” In fact, brides can register for everything at The Hutch.

You’ll find many seasonal items, including outdoor accessories. They’re always displayed beautifully, as the store’s motto is, “Holidays begin at home, and beautiful homes begin at The Hutch.”

If you need something for the baby who wasn’t born with a silver spoon, you can find one here. “We have a huge baby department of better gifts,” says Donna. Items include spoons, as well as silver cups, china, and Gund bears.

Customers can expect outstanding customer service. “We try to remember all our customers’ names,” she says. “We really are an upscale, trendy, happy place to purchase gifts where you’ll always be greeted with a smile.”

Donna likes to say that she is “Brooklyn — born and bred.” She has been active in the community for years. The business was originally owned by Donna’s aunt who ran it for 30 years before Donna took over.

The Hutch delivers locally. Shop till you drop Tuesdays through Fridays, from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m.; and on Saturdays, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Additional information may be found at www.thehutchinc.net. “Come in and browse. There’s always something on sale,” says Donna.

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