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Custom light shop opens downtown

November 15, 2018

From football helmets to tea cups, Jessie Hartig looks for potential light in everything she sees.

She has a knack for turning unusual items into lamps and light fixtures, a hobby she and her husband have turned into a business.

Jessie and Jason Hartig operate It all Started With a Beer Custom Light Fixtures downtown. The store is located at 118 S. Fourth St., next to the couple’s other business, Hartig Electric.

Opening a lighting store seemed like a natural progression for the couple and a way for Jessie to put her creative side to use.

“Some of them already were old lights and we rewire them and make them safe again,” Jessie said. “The rest is stuff that we find and we make it all ourselves. We drill all of our own glass. It’s stuff we can’t duplicate — one-of-a-kind fixtures.”

No two fixtures are the same and are made from unconventional items Jessie finds at sales or that customers bring in to her.

“We have people who bring us items from their house and ask if we can make it into a light for them,” Jessie said. “Old lanterns and things they had in their garage from their grandpa or somebody who left it and we make it into a lamp or light fixture. We’ve done a lot of custom stuff that way.”

Some of the lamps and fixtures currently in the store are made out of an old scale, barn pulley, teacup set, and a few made from blankets and doilies that were dipped in concrete.

One light in the store that customers always ask about is a hanging fixture made from a real tumbleweed.

“The one we hear the most about is our tumbleweed,” Jason said. “I found that tumbleweed in a sandpit in Powell and I brought it home in the back of the truck and she turned it into a light fixture.”

The tumbleweed may be the first fixture to catch the eye, but the first question the couple receives is usually about the name of the store. As you might have guessed, It all Started With a Beer Custom Light Fixtures started with a beer.

“We were all sitting around drinking a beer and just came up with the idea of doing some light fixtures,” Jason said. “We thought of what we should call it and were pretty scared to take that leap and call it that because we didn’t know how other people would react, but it’s been pretty good.”

The couple renovated the building and outfitted the walls with old pallet wood, and Jessie added the store was started, in part, to give the couple something to work on after their kids graduated high school.

“We bought the building a couple years ago for Hartig Electric and thought we would make this a showroom and go for it,” she said. “I always enjoyed creating things. I do it around the house all the time and we had the space.”

It all Started With a Beer Custom Light Fixtures is open Tuesday through Friday from 1-5 p.m., and until 6 p.m. Thursdays. The store is also open Saturday’s from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. On Saturday, Nov. 17, a holiday open house will be held featuring sales and gifts with a purchase.

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