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BARGAINS / GERI COOK

A Custom Touch : Accessories like those found in resort gift shops are available close to home--without the boutique prices.

October 14, 1994|GERI COOK

If you love the jewelry, hats and accessories you see in the gift shops of resort hotels, you'll love the inventory at A Touch of Spring. The owners, Sherry Sidiropoulos and her cousin Susie Reitman, design and sell many of their creations to various resort and hotel shops across the country.

They often emblazon the hotels' logos on caps and are set up to customize their products, which they do at their combination studio / warehouse / showroom in Tarzana. The consumer here can get the same customized products--but at wholesale prices.

Their hat styles are wonderful, with the emphasis on a Western motif. You'll find an assortment of straws and felts that range in price from $25 to $55.

For $55, there is a large, floppy felt that comes in jewel tones and several styles, from a huge antique flower on a pushed-up front to one embroidered in gold all over and down all around. Garbo would have loved it.

When Sherry mentioned that they love this style in Chicago, I asked, "What about the wind?" Her answer came in the form of a tray of lovely Austrian crystal hat pins priced from $6 to $15.

Caps and visors can be customized to your interests, whether they be golf, tennis, cards or animals. Just pick out the style and color, and state your desire. For this customizing, the price range is $12 to $25.

A collection of hair accessories and bridal headpieces, fitting either for the most demure bride or the glitzy, black-feathered siren, also sell at wholesale prices. (They're even cheaper if you order in volume). Figure $15 for demure and $25 for glitzy.

The costume jewelry rates among the best. A very lightweight gold necklace with the appearance of crocheted yarn is a Greek import at $25. Both Sidiropoulos and Reitman are experts in beadwork and make a collection of Swarovski crystal earrings to your specifications, an order they often fill for bridal parties. The earrings range from $15 to $48.

Every time I visit A Touch of Spring, some delicious little surprise is revealed, and this time it was "sleeve-holders"--elasticized metal bands designed to keep one's sleeves out of one's soup. At $5 a pair, I bought three--one for me and two for a couple of deserving friends. Since the owners attend trade shows from time to time, it's wise to call before you go.

Geri Cook's Bargains column runs every Friday in Valley Life! Questions about shopping may be sent to her, in care of Valley Life!, Los Angeles Times, 20000 Prairie St., Chatsworth, CA 91311. Letters will not be answered individually, but topics of general interest will be discussed in future columns. Geri Cook can be heard from 9 to 10 a.m. Saturdays on KIEV 870-AM.

Where to Shop

What: A Touch of Spring.

Location: The Alley in the Valley, behind 6000 Reseda Blvd., Tarzana.

Hours: 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday to Saturday.

Cards: MasterCard and Visa.

Call: (818) 343-3053.

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