The Ladies Behind Sparkly Ragz and Le Sparkly Chateau
There is so much to love about Benicia: gorgeous waterfront views, beautiful weather, and a uniqueness made evident by the wonderful small businesses that have made their home here. Benicia is especially fortunate in the number of excellent family-owned businesses it enjoys, as this valuable sector is often highly influential in shaping a city’s identity. Two such businesses, Sparkly Ragz and Le Sparkly Chateau, the conception of Holly Conse (owner) and her daughter, Salina (co-visionary and manager), have recently livened up Benicia’s retail landscape. Consummate shoppers themselves, these entrepreneurs have brought their unique vision to Benicia with the intention of creating a shopping experience filled with excitement, fun and “all things bubbly and sparkly.”
Sparkly Ragz, an Artisan & Luxury Consignment shop on First Street, is a noticeably joyous and bright space.
The store sparkles, as the name would imply, and its incredible selection of beautiful candles, jewelry, bath products, and clothing create a sensory shopping experience. This is not the “consignment” store of old—in fact, a big misconception that Holly and Salina encounter is that “consignment” means “thrift” store. Dispelling the idea that they primarily sell “used” items has proved to be one of their biggest challenges, although the word “consignment” simply means that they are selling on another’s behalf. Only about 10% of all of their inventory is actually pre-owned, and many times these items are exclusive (like high end handbags) or have never been used.
This store has evolved since it first opened in Suisun (2012) as Holly’s side project to her corporate job.
She initially began by stocking the store with the excess that she had collected from her love of shopping, as well as items from Salina and her friends’ closets. Eventually, as Holly searched for inventory that would represent the lifestyle brand that she ultimately hoped to create, the store became a significant outlet in which artisans/makers could sell their work. In 2020, when they moved to Benicia, Holly’s vision had fully materialized: Sparkly Ragz was a boutique offering high-end items without the high-end price tags and an eclectic mix of new and like-new items. Their inventory today boasts the work of over 70 local artisans and hand-selected apparel from all over the world; and they purchase in small batches so that everything that they offer is totally unique.
The evolution of Sparkly Ragz is made all the more remarkable by the fact that this mother-daughter team opened it in Benicia immediately before the shut-down in 2020 and were still able to open its sister store, Le Sparkly Chateau, earlier this year. Often visible within one or both of their stores, Holly and Salina’s warm, and yes—sparkly—demeanors never reveal how incredibly hard these entrepreneurs have worked over the last few years. During the pandemic, the Facebook Live shopping events that they had previously held only once a month ramped up to 3-4 times a week. This often involved spending all day getting ready, all night packing and shipping, and then returning the next day to do it all over again. This ingenious pivot, although grueling, not only supported their business growth, but entertained their loyal fan base throughout a difficult time and expanded their online presence all the way to New York, Texas and Arizona.
Le Sparkly Chateau, their newest boutique further up First Street, offers a refreshing mix of (new) items for gift giving, home décor, and entertaining.
Stocked with fun seasonal items in addition to their trademark artisan finds, this store enables its patrons to create a festive and beautiful home space and is a perfect destination for the holidays.