Everyone loves a browse down one of Newcastle’s go-to shopping strips, Beaumont St, and with so much to offer you can understand why. One of our personal favourite reasons for loving Beaumont St though is the history and personality each of the longer-standing stores hold. One bright and bubbly shop owner you can’t help but love is none other than Janice Musumeci and her store, July Jones Style Studio.
Located smack bang in the middle of Beaumont St, July Jones has held its presence in the retail centre of Newcastle since its inception in March 2017. Brought to us by Janice, the Newcastle-born and bred character has had quite the career in retail, and we’re psyched to know she’s decided to come back to her roots here on Beaumont St.
Those that have been shopping the Beaumont St strip for many years, might even recognise Janice from her very first store back in the early 90s by the name of Dressed on Beaumont.
“I’ve always been in retail. My first job was as the manager of Cue Shop back in the late 80s when big hair and bigger shoulder pads were the trend… Then in my early 20s, I opened Dressed on Beaumont,” Janice said.
After selling the boutique two years later, the following years saw Janice living in both Adelaide and Sydney. Still rotating around the retail world, Janice made the call to move back to Newcastle after her dream position was made redundant.
“I thought hmm, what am I going to do? I said to my hubby, I used to have my own space, why don’t I do it again? After living in North Adelaide, it’s just full of all these little boutique stores and North Sydney had just as many. I love boutique shopping and when I got back to Newcastle, I ended up just ordering online from all of my favourite boutique stores across Sydney and Adelaide. There wasn’t anything really here for a 40+ year-old woman with curves here.”
So, that’s exactly what she did.
Officially opening the doors up to the people of Newcastle on the 12th of March 2017, July Jones has slowly but surely made a name for itself with its personalised style service, quirky interiors, and unique brand offerings.
“I have tried to create a beautiful space for women. From the window displays, the type of music in store and the scent of the candle burning in store.”
The typical July Jones customer is one that loves personalised service and unique pieces that will last a lifetime. The typical woman who walks through the doors has generally turned their back on the big shopping centres, and instead want that boutique shopping experience.
Looking around the store, you can’t not notice the unique murals and typography that exudes all that July Jones stands for. The beautifully depicted 1940s Vogue cover taking over the outside of the changeroom and of course, the overhead Coco Chanel quote; ‘beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself,’ all add that extra touch of luxury.
“That’s a bit of my mantra really. I get so many women come in and say oh I don’t like this, and I don’t like that about myself. We’re so self-critical! I feel if they can come in here and feel comfortable to try new things, refresh their look, and walk away happy; it’s just the best feeling. To just make other women feel good.”
With a focus on women’s fashion, July Jones puts an emphasis on bringing in labels that are a bit different and unexpected. Expect to see some absolutely divine pieces by FOIL NZ Clothing, Joseph Ribkoff, Gabby Isabella, Lemon Tree Design, Fate & Becker, and Betty Basics.
“I buy in one of each size and once gone, that’s it! This keeps the stock fresh, and customers engaged with the what’s new factor and the fear of missing out!”
The shoes and boots are hand finished in Spain and exclusive to the Beaumont St store and won’t be found anywhere else in Newcastle. With quirky homewares at the core of Janice’s product base as well, you can get all sorts of goods for the home not to mention the delicious Fragonard parfum, candles, and soaps that come direct from France!
“The brands that I have in here you just won’t find in the major shopping centres. I’ve worked with a number of different brands over the past four years, but I don’t tend to go outside of my core brands now.”
The Beaumont St style studio has become a favourite amongst the local Hamilton community, not only due to the unique offering but Janice has become quite the iconic character across the local business community.
“It is a bit of a village feel here. Once you get to know the other business owners, you get into a discussion with people, and you’ll encourage customers to check out all the other businesses.”
Over the past four years in business, July Jones has become much more than just a retail experience, with customers becoming not only great customers, but even greater friends!
“I love building the relationships I have with people, to make connections, and along the way, I have made some lifelong friends.”
If you’re looking for that old-fashioned, but modern styling, boutique shopping experience, July Jones is the store for you.
“This will be me until I’m 80. I’ll be the 80-year-old, grey-haired lady with red lips on Beaumont St!”
Get on down to Beaumont St and let Janice work her magic and set you on your way with a new-found style and respect for the retailers of Newcastle!