Many already know Louis Lemieux and have shopped at his award-winning interior design and lifestyle mercantile Blueprint CT Home. It’s hard not to fall in love with the many curated items that he has sourced from around the world—some collected by his parents during his childhood in Africa and Asia—others acquired while globetrotting through some 45 countries.
While Covid-19 impacted small businesses especially hard, the pandemic also created rebranding opportunities. When kitchen shops in Litchfield and New Preston closed—and many residents accustomed to a sophisticated range of global flavors relocated from New York City—Lemieux refocused and rebranded.
“There’s an important three-way intersection in retail between what customers desire, what business you yourself want to be in, and what customers will pay for,” he explains. “I realized we have a real gap in what neighbors want—a kitchen store, but I also want to put my own stamp on a new concept.”
Blueprint CT Kitchen born in its current location at 7 West Street in Litchfield, with expansion plans in February across the street at 43 West Street. The expansion allows Lemieux and his mother Therese to showcase more of their curated specialty foods, innovative kitchen items, globally sourced linens and tabletop (vintage and modern). The first level will open offering inventive, small batch artisan pantry items and global fare, followed in March by chilled offerings such as chilled vintage sodas, health drinks, all cold-pressed coffee, all a part of the opportunity to build community (post-Covid) with a café type area with benches and tables. The second floor will open mid-Spring and offer innovative gadgets and machines, imported and domestic china, glassware, ironstone along with every kitchen must-have.
Rejuvenate with Oprah’s 2019 favorite teas from India, purchase the beautiful teapot and cup, an infuser, and local aged honey. Rock the Kasbah while you replicate dinner in Marrakech with exotic sauces, recipes; and a genuine clay Tagine awaits. The Lemieux’s transport you all over the world, whether you’re craving decadent French macarons, flown-in weekly, handmade Italian pasta, inventive cocktail shrubs and mixes, or cardamom-infused maple syrup, each item is meticulously chosen and features stories that Lemieux enthusiastically shares.
“We are socially-minded and purpose-driven,” Lemieux declares. “We look at every ingredient for every product and are 100 percent confident that each item we sell has a socially-positive impact.”
Gorgeous table and kitchen linens are offered through a California-based organization that provides microloans to women artisans. Market bags handmade in Bangladesh empower and support their female employees. A chocolatier donates a meal for every chocolate sold; fiery hot sauces in adorable mini grenades are made by a veteran’s organization that support troops and injured American military heroes.
The Lemieux’s gratefully acknowledge their customers, neighbors, and fellow business owners for their continued success and referrals.“The pandemic has reminded people of the value of others, their priorities, and of community,” Lemieux reflects. “Ultimately, what sustains a community are the people in it.”
43 West St