Retailer Spotlight: Tara ShawTraveling to Europe several times a year would be a dream to some—to Tara Shaw, it’s just part of her career.

Shaw jets off to places such as Sweden, Italy, Belgium and France in search of unique antique furniture and art, ranging in size, function and time period.

“I’m the eternal optimist,” she says warmly. “I am always on a treasure hunt.” She also refers to her job as “guerilla antiquing.”

Several times a year, Shaw journeys overseas and ships the goods back to
New Orleans and Houston, her second store location.

Antique beds, tables, chairs, dishes, statues and chandeliers are just a sampling of what she buys. Shaw sells these items to the trade only, which includes decorators, designers and antique dealers who come to her stores from all over the country.

Harry Connick Jr. and chef Emeril Lagasse and his wife Alden have been inspired by her creativity and taste, and have hired her as a decorator for their homes, though she says this is more of a hobby. She has been featured in Veranda magazine, as well as  St. Charles Avenue magazine.

“Design is my creative outlet,” she says brightly. “I like to mix my antiques with contemporary furniture.”

When Shaw is traveling, she relies on managers Linda Hall of the New Orleans location and Susan Femia of the Houston store to work with customers.

Her dog, Jack Shaw, who is ever present in the New Orleans store, is known
for greeting visitors.

Shaw hosts sales several times a year when her shipments arrive, but buyers beware: her finds are hot commodities, and sometimes they sell out in just a matter of minutes!