DOWNEY – A local family has taken the treasures they found while traveling and turned them into a new shop that will open this weekend.
Mother, daughter and niece trio Loraine Medina, 48, Alyssa Hilton, 23, Kassandra Medina, 15, will open The Gypsy Trip on Sunday, selling clothes, accessories and other items collected on their own personal travels.
The store started as an old mobile library truck which they purchased in October 2018.
“We love to travel everywhere and (Hilton) loves fashion,” Loraine said. “I told him that it would be a very good idea to buy this truck… We fixed it, we all fixed it. We converted it; a small mobile library to a mobile shop.
The company started out small, making small pop-up shops for family and friends, with great success.
“The further we went, the more positive feedback we got,” Hilton said. “We loved connecting with the people, the experience and all that.”
When the Covid-19 pandemic took hold, The Gypsy Trip was forced to go on hiatus, starting again just about a year ago.
Today, the family of entrepreneurs has seen even bigger with their first brick-and-mortar store, located at 7823 Florence Ave.
Hilton is currently engaged in the store full-time. Kassandra, still a student at Downey High School, works on many graphic and design elements. Loraine supervises and plays a mentor/support role.
They say the shop is for “free-spirited” women of all sizes.
“Since we travel, we try to bring things from everywhere,” Loraine said. “Little things you wouldn’t really find at the mall, or handmade stuff.”
“We welcome all women, from size small to 3x, so that’s another thing that (our customers) love.”
“We offer plus sizes that most boutiques don’t,” Kassandra added.
Loraine specifically mentioned that she recently brought back items from Baja and Romania, but future stock is only limited by their journey.
“I’m going to bring something back,” said Loraine. “Usually I take a big luggage bag…because I know I’m going to bring (product) back.”
Gypsy Trip will host a grand opening celebration on Sunday, complete with music, drinks and specials.
They hope it will be the first of many stores, but don’t necessarily want to become a chain. The original truck will also still be used.
“I want us to grow,” Loraine said. “I don’t like the word ‘chain’, just having a lot of Gypsy Trips everywhere, but still having the little vibe feeling, like a little shop. We don’t want to be a Walmart or Target. We want to grow, but we want to stay small at the same time.