Kennedy Studios starts conversations

Filled with the perfect gifts and conversation starters for home, friends, and family, Uniques by Kennedy Studios newer location, across the street from Marathon Airport, is where owner Marija Schissler says she’s staying “forever.”

“We grew all we could at our other location,” she said. “Locals knew where to find us, but we needed to be easier for others to find, too.”

Marija, who bought the business 11 years ago with co-owner Chuck Kean, said the 22-year-old Marathon business’ new home is brighter, more visible, and has more space at Southwind Plaza, 8903 Overseas Highway. The gallery carries local artwork by Julie Joyce, Lynn Voit, Judith Conner, BJ Royster, and more, but also has shelves filled with sterling silver jewelry, glasswork, picture frames, sea salt scrubs, and tropical trinkets. 

“I love to hear good stories that open up my heart,” said Schissler, pointing to a framed piece depicting a fishing boat by a local high schooler. “It’s a very eccentric mix of things.”

Some of her favorite items in the shop include the cat and dog picture frames and the glow-in-the-dark jellyfish, which make great nightlights. “It has to speak to you,” she said of the whimsical glass art. “I always tell people to pick out the one they are most drawn to, then we can change the base.”

While showcasing some of her favorite things by other artists throughout the United States, she is also an artist in her (very rare) free time. “I’m inspired by the ocean, seashells, and driftwood,” she said. Her driftwood piece, which catches the eye as soon as someone walks in, was created with a piece she found on a local beach.

Prices range from $2 and up. “We have great price points, something for everyone,” she said.

The store opens at 10 a.m. Monday through Saturday, and Schissler says to swing in because she and store assistant Jeff Houghs love greeting guests. “We have a no-pressure, laidback atmosphere here,” she said.

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