Brooklyn Women’s Exchange is relocating from 55 Pierrepont St. to 137 Montague St., the ground level space below the UPS Store, last occupied by Heights Cleaners. The stars aligned as BWE searched for a new space due to its lease expiring, and the Calfa brothers (owners of Lassen & Hennigs) sought a new tenant for their vacant commercial space. While discussing possible tenants with Erika Belsey Worth of the Brooklyn Heights Association, Tom Calfa said, “What I really want is the Brooklyn Women’s Exchange.” Worth then connected the soon-to-be landlord and tenant.
Extensive renovations will be necessary to transform the old dry cleaner’s space to a gift shop, but the work is expected to be completed by early September 2022. BWE President Ann Aurigemma said, “The Brooklyn Women’s Exchange has occupied two other spaces on Montague St. in our 168-year history and we are very excited to be back! We hope our new location will provide greater visibility for our hand-crafted products and an enhanced connection with our community.”
Kate Chura, Executive Director of Montague Street Business Improvement District said, “We’re excited to welcome Brooklyn Women’s Exchange, the oldest remaining Women’s Exchange in the country, back to Montague Street, Brooklyn’s first business corridor. We look forward to their grand opening this Fall, and to the unique crafts and gifts they’ll offer Montague St. shoppers.”
BWE is a non-profit, volunteer-run shop, supporting over three-hundred artisans with seventy cents of every dollar going back to the crafter. BWE carries gifts for everyone and for every season. Let’s support the BWE now and at their new location. Visit their shop on Pierrepont St. through the summer, check out their website, and follow them on Instagram.
More About The Brooklyn Women’s Exchange:
For 168 years the Brooklyn Women’s Exchange, a not for profit, volunteer organization, has served the Brooklyn community. BWE is currently located at 55 Pierrepont Street, where they have been since 1980. The Exchange’s mission is to support American handcrafts. There are over forty volunteers who staff the shop, curate the handcrafted items and publicize their mission. Items included in the shop are hand knit items, children’s clothing, jewelry, holiday items, linens, pottery, greeting cards, books, toys and much more.
BWE takes great pride in being at the forefront of the American Crafts movement since 1854. BWE is a member of the Federation of Women’s Exchanges, which includes fifteen Exchanges around the country. Of these women-operated, volunteer-run community organizations, BWE is the oldest, continuously operating Exchange.
Photos courtesy of BWE.