Ace Hardware returns to Barrington
Ace Hardware salesman Tom Coombs of Rolling Meadows shows the stores color matching system which will scan a color sample to get an accurate paint match. | Michelle LaVigne ~ Sun-Times Media
Updated: November 27, 2012 11:46AM
BARRINGTON — Barrington do-it-yourselfers and handymen no longer have to travel far for tools and supplies thanks to the return of Ace Hardware.
The new store at 906 S. Northwest Highway opened its doors for business last week.
Proprietor John Brown, recently retired after 10 years in retail management and 27 years with a cosmetics company, said he always wanted to own and operate his own company.
“I’m much too young to totally retire so I thought to go after this business,” he said. “It will be very satisfying to me personally.”
Brown thought a hardware store seemed to be a sound investment, particularly because the village lost its previous Ace retailer a few years ago. Since then residents have been pining for another shop.
“There’s been a great community spirit about opening the store,” Brown said.
A dozen employees with experience in hardware, painting and architecture help oversee an inventory of more than 25,000 products.
“We have a nice blend of staff that will complement our business,” Brown said.
Fisher Nuts previously occupied the 8,000-square-foot building. Ace Hardware is keeping the nut business’ top-selling goods on its shelves to appease a local loyal following.
Other local company products are for sale as well, including natural odor eliminators from Fresh Wave, based in Long Grove.
With the season’s first frost already on the ground Brown is primping Ace Hardware to become a one-stop-shop for holiday decorations. For the past two decades a landscaping company has sold freshly cut Christmas trees in an adjacent parking lot.
“That tradition will continue,” Brown said. “And you’ll have the convenience of coming into the store to buy lights and extension chords and tree-trimming tools.”
He is also in the process of obtaining state licensing to distribute propane gas on the store’s premises.
If residents have other wants and needs, Brown and his new staff are all ears.
“If we get enough requests for specialty niche items, we may try to carry them,” he said. “I’m certainly open to listening to customers.”