A for-lease sign has been posted outside of Raku, a gift shop on Claremont’s Yale Avenue, for a year, even with the store in operation, and at one point last year Raku was looking for a new home in the Village. Passing by on Monday, though, I was sad to see the store empty and the above notice on the door.
I was never a big spender there, but I did buy greeting cards and wrap, and occasionally a gift item. The cards were usually quirky and handmade, the items of an off-kilter bent. I’ve been shopping there since moving to Claremont but had no idea the store had been around since the early 1970s. It was a hipper version of Barbara Cheatley or Carkle Sudie, two of the Village’s other gift stores and places no man ever visits except under duress.
(Heirloom Village, a block over on Indian Hill, will be a more than acceptable substitute in this niche, but still.)
Does anyone know any background on Raku or its demise, or just have a memory to share? Please comment if you do. I know that raku is a form of pottery, but what that has to do with the store I don’t know.