I was driving north on Austin Boulevard recently. I had just passed Columbus Park and was almost to the light at Madison Street when I happened to glance to my right and I could not believe my eyes.
I was somewhat confused, so I made a right, parked my car and walked down Austin to look in the window. There I saw a newly hung awning that read Annie Bell Fragrances.
I pulled on the door and a young lady smiled, walked over and opened the door.
“Welcome to Annie Bell. How can I help you?” she asked.
What! Where am I? This place was gorgeous, and it smelled wonderful.
I was so excited to see this new black-owned and operated business opening in our community.
I could tell that there was a lot of thought put into the décor. There were white marble floors, flowers and white sheers draped in the windows. It felt like something you’d find on Rodeo Drive or the Gold Coast.
I began to talk with the Fallon Johnson, the store’s owner, and learned she was born and raised in Englewood, then moved to the western suburbs. When she decided to open her business she began to look online for a storefront location in the Chicagoland area.
Just by chance she was driving to the Northwest Side to deliver her hand-made candles when she happened to see her current location for rent. After a little more research and viewing the location, Ms. Johnson told me she believed it was just God’s will for her to open her business at the 3 S. Austin Blvd.