City Lifestyle

Want to start a publication?

Learn More
Kim Reid with staff members, from left to right, Hannah McClain, Kim, Diamond Lara, and Lizz Lewis.

Featured Article

Kim Reid Has a Retail Trifecta on Hebron Avenue

Her three retail operations are steps apart in the heart of Glastonbury's commercial area

After years of running her own businesses Kim Reid has developed a simple philosophy that guides her personal and professional lives. 

“I just want to live in a nice community, a town that’s warm and supportive and to be around people I know and who know me.” 

That’s become a mantra in how Kim runs her three businesses here in Glastonbury, Pinwheels Toys & Games, Glazed Pottery Painting & Art Studio, and The Silver Dahlia, all of them on Hebron Avenue. 

A native of Darien, Kim and her husband, Ethan Reid, moved to Glastonbury in 2005 and shortly after Kim, who previously ran an Italian deli in New Canaan, worked as a real estate appraiser. But then, she says, “I just got the itch to own my own business again.” 

That itch led to the creation of The Silver Dahlia in 2009. The state and country were in the throes of the Great Recession that year. Nonetheless, Kim’s jewelry and accessories store did well, in part she says, because the store was the only retail shop in the area to sell Alex & Ani, a type of bangle jewelry that was popular that year. 

“In 2009 we were in the recession big time, but we were fortunate. When we first opened we were all silver jewelry … and it was during the Pandora bead craze. We were also the first store to offer Alex & Ani.”

The Silver Dahlia proved so successful it moved three times so it could expand. Today it offers a variety of gifts, accessories, home goods and apparel. 

Its success led to two other stores Kim subsequently opened, Pinwheels Toys & Games, which opened five years ago, and Glazed Pottery Painting and Art Studio, which Kim opened three years ago.  A mother of three, Kim says she wanted to run businesses that catered to kids and families. 

“I wanted to do something I thought would go well in Glastonbury.” 

The Silver Dahlia is located at 41 Hebron Ave. Glazed Pottery and Pinwheels are both located in a 10,000-square-foot building at 60 Hebron Ave. Pinwheels occupies the first floor, Glazed is on the second.

Pinwheels, Kim says, grew out of the popularity of the toys she started introducing into The Silver Dahlia’s inventory several years ago. 

“It just got my brain ticking about doing something more with it.” She started the toy store in the space The Silver Dahlia now occupies at 41 Hebron Ave., and both stores grew so quickly that she and her husband decided to lease the building at 60 Hebron Ave., so they could move Pinwheels there and relocate The Silver Dahlia to 41 Hebron Ave. 

“Both of them needed more space.” 

The space above Pinwheels was vacant and Kim says that led to the creation of Glazed Pottery. 

“We had this big empty space and all these things went through my head on what we could do with it. I settled on (Glazed) because I like the artistic nature of it and the family nature of it.” 

Pinwheels sells a wide variety of kids toys, games and stuffed animals. Kim says she seeks out products that are unique, spur a child’s imagination and are fun. 

Some of her favorite toy picks for kids are traditional favorites, such as trucks for boys and play kitchens for girls because “They’re just so much fun and they’re imaginative and interactive.” 

She said the community has embraced Pinwheels, despite the competition she faces with online buying options. 

She attributes that success, in part, to her store’s culture of being part of the community. For instance, Kim says, some customers come in just to entertain their kids for a while. Both Pinwheels and Glazed have play areas set aside. 

“Maybe they don’t buy anything but they play at the LEGO station or they go outside to blow bubbles. It’s just a wonderful community feeling and I just want to focus on that.” 

Her three businesses weathered the recent Covid-19 shutdowns, but it took a bit of a rapid-response by her and her staff, she says. 

“It was difficult because we didn’t have websites we could sell off of, so we quickly got our websites going.” 

Glazed did the best at first because families that were shut in during quarantine were looking for projects to do with kids. The pottery studio put together at-home kits parents could pick up and then return to have them fired in the studio’s kilns. 

“It worked out wonderfully.” 

Then, Kim says, “Pinwheels started going like gangbusters” with online orders for curbside pickups. “In two weeks we sold out of puzzles. Life was still happening and it was so good to give back to the community. It worked out wonderfully.” 

She laughs when asked if she’s mulling yet another store opening. That, she says, isn’t in the works. 

“I think I’m content for a while.”

As summer wanes and the kids are starting to get bored with the long days, here are a few of Kim Reid’s picks for games and toys to keep them entertained until school starts. 

  1. Minibrands, $9.95. Each ball comes with five tiny brand products inside for kids who love miniature toys. 

  2. Life board game, $33.99. This classic game now includes pets that kids can add to their “life.”

  3. Magna-Tiles, $76.99. A game that challenges kids math and science skills.

  4. Sprinkler Buddies, $25.99. This nearly 40-inch blow up dino sprays up to 9 feet for late summer water fun.  

  • Kim Reid with staff members, from left to right, Hannah McClain, Kim, Diamond Lara, and Lizz Lewis.