Kaminskaadamski3Halina Kaminska-Adamski outside her new store.Rcsm2_010508

Haven’t we been in here before, this narrow space next door to David Levine Salon?

Indeed, we have, though it looks and feels quite different.

Longtime redbankgreen readers may recall our feature about Gisela Soliman as she closed down Town Trimmings, her decades-old sewing-supply store on Monmouth Street in 2006. Or our story on the Four Chicks and a Rooster, the general-store themed business owned by camera-shy Irwin Katz that opened in the same space in 2007.

Well, the great retail churn being what it is, there’s a new store at 24 Monmouth. It’s called Adams Imports.

Proprietor Halina Kaminska Adamski has given the interior a spiffing-up from the days of Soliman’s workbench counter and Katz’s pine-board-on-sawhorses esthetic. Now, the place is cool and hushed as a garden bower in summer.

But like any other business owner, Adamski enters the retail fray with high hopes that her idea proves durable.

CreamerA stoneware creamer, and the interior of the new Adams Imports, on Monmouth Street, below.


Product durability, in fact, is one of Adamski’s selling points.

She specializes in Polish stoneware — handmade, hand-painted dishware that, belying to its delicate appearance, is “completely useful,” she says, because every piece is dishwasher-, oven-, microwave- and freezer-safe.

“It looks like it’s for special occasions, but its for everyday use,” she says.

The pieces are lead-free porcelain and each one is signed by the artisan who glazed it. It all comes from a ceramics factory in Boleslawiec, Poland that’s been around for more than 200 years, according to Adamski.

She also carries Polish crystal. Prices in the store range from $45 for a stoneware creamer to $390 for a crystal vase. Tableware can be purchased a piece at a time or in full sets.

A nine-year resident of Red Bank, Adamski spent many years as a distributor of stoneware, but not of the level of quality she carries.

“This is my dream-come-true store,” she says. “I’m in love with this stuff.”

Now comes the challenge of making that feeling infectious in a tight economy.

redbankgreen met Adamski the day her shop opened in early December, before the economic downturn and other factors led to closings of neighboring ME (formerly Monica Elizabeth), Asher Neiman Gallery and Red Bank News, and shortly after the departure of Fameabilia, all from Monmouth Street alone. But already, a general sense of doom was gathering.

“Yes, I am worried about the economy,” Adamski says. “But I hope people are going to love this stuff as much as I do, and realize that they can use it every day.”

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