A hybrid bookstore is how Beverly Ingle describes Bespoke Books and Archives, her new venture in Leesburg. “It’s part traditional book retailer and part used-book store, with some rare and antiquarian books as icing on the cake,” she says. “My current inventory includes everything from newly released fiction to a 1571 copy of St. Augustine’s and St. Bernard’s meditations.”
Ingle is the owner and self-described book hunter at her new shop, opened on July 1 in downtown Leesburg across from the courthouse. In addition to new releases, the shop will focus on hard-to-find and out-of-the-ordinary books, including those with striking cover designs, limited printings, and niche subjects, along with custom acquisitions. Ingle also plans to offer services including personal library development based on a client’s favorite interests, authors, subjects, printing periods, or binding styles, and custom book collections for sale or rent to add style for interior decoration and home staging. There are also plans for in-store events like wine tastings.
A trip to Paris a few summers ago was the catalyst and inspiration for the store. Ingle and her oldest daughter, Anna, stumbled upon a used-book store in the city’s 8th arrondissement. Ingle couldn’t resist browsing, and after they popped in, Anna secretly asked the store manager if he had any old copies in stock of works by Alexandre Dumas—one of her mom’s favorite authors. After a few moments, her daughter came around a back corner holding an 1891 leather-bound volume of a French serialized version of The Count of Monte Cristo. “I burst into happy tears, it was like we found treasure,” she says. “That’s how I want my customers to feel.”
In addition to owning the shop, Ingle is a copywriter and content developer and the author of two published works: 10 Little Rules for the Modern Southern Belle and Design Thinking for Small Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses: Putting the Power of Design to Work. She also has a masters degree in library science and a graduate certificate in archives management. But she always dreamed of owning a bookstore. “When I saw this space available, the dream took on shape and became reality.”
Bespoke Books and Archives will be open Monday through Wednesday by appointment, and Thursday through Saturday from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.; the shop is closed on Sundays. For more information, visit its website.
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