On Sunday on Main Street in Westhampton Beach, two entrepreneurs opened the doors to Life is Good, the newest retail shop in the village that exclusively features apparel and housewares sold by the New England-based company.
Operated by Allison Galasso and her husband, Andrew, the village shop is the first of its kind in Nassau and Suffolk counties. The Galassos also own Bungalow, a specialty clothing and footwear store located on Main Street in Westhampton Beach that caters to skiers and snowboarders.
“Life is Good has apparel for men, women and kids, and it has housewares, like coffee mugs and cereal bowls,” Ms. Galasso said. “And it has stuff for dogs, like beds, leashes and bowls.”
According to the Life is Good website, the brand emphasizes positivity and humor, and the company even sponsors festivals across the country that support the company’s charity organization, the Life is Good Kids Foundation. The foundation supports organizations that assist children who have been victimized by trauma and poverty.
Ms. Galasso expects to have an official grand opening, a special event featuring the founders of Life is Good—brothers Bert and John Jacobs of Massachusetts—in early June.
Ms. Galasso explained that her store, located at 126 Main Street, and which she described as having a rustic, New England feel, was decorated and laid out by interior designers from Life is Good. All the wood pieces in the store are made from barn boards salvaged from Maine, items that the company also sells online.
While the Life is Good store on Main Street is the first of its kind on Long Island—the two closest outlets are located at John F. Kennedy and LaGuardia airports in Queens—the company will boast 101 outlets across the country as of June, according to Jim Laughlin, the director of communications for the company. The shops are located as far north as Massachusetts and as far west as California. One shop is located in Canada, Mr. Laughlin said.
“All of the Life is Good stores are independently owned,” explained Ms. Galasso, noting that the stores are not franchises.
The Life is Good store in Westhampton Beach, Ms. Galasso explained, is what the company terms a “genuine neighborhood shoppe, an individually owned store completely dedicated to Life is Good products.”
The Life is Good company, in fact, contacted Ms. Galasso about possibly opening a retail outlet on the East End. She has carried the company’s products for the past five years—three years at Bungalow and two years at her former store, Arline’s Ski and Snowboard. That shop, once located on Route 25 in Aquebogue, closed in April 2007. Ms. Galasso is also the former owner of Jetties Surf Shop on Main Street in Westhampton Beach, but she sold that business five years ago.
Mr. Laughlin explained that the company goes “through a good quality process to select entrepreneurs that understand the mission of Life is Good, and that can run a high quality neighborhood or community business.”
“We fully support the store owner,” Mr. Laughlin added. “We’re careful about where the stores are placed because we want to make sure that there aren’t any existing retailers too close.”
Ms. Galasso noted that she is not the first clothing retailer on Main Street to offer only one brand. ABS by Allen Schwartz and Calypso, both shops that focus exclusively on a single brand and have outlets across the country, also operate on Main Street in the village.
“It’s a new business on Main Street,” said Jarret Willis, one of the owners of Blue 1, an upscale boutique located next door to Life is Good at 124 Main Street. “I hope it does well.”