When you’re driving down Lidice (main) Street in Tabor, you can’t miss the new, bright red steel building right across from the post office. Judy Lundy built the building in 2020 to house her store Loving Hands Gifts. Judy sells a wide variety of gifts, artwork, clothing, Czech, and German items. She is open from 11 am to 4 pm on Thursdays through Sundays.
Loving Hand Gifts’ slogan is “Where imagination becomes reality,” and this is evident as soon as you step in the store. Judy is a lifelong artist that creates unique artwork, alters pieces to make them beautiful, and sells things that people can’t find anywhere else.
Judy also likes to say that “Art is never finished, only abandoned.” This is why she sells kits that can be assembled at home and encourages customers to ask her project-related questions.
Judy has always been creative and interested in arts and crafts, but she began creating and selling art when she started collecting plants. Both sets of her grandparents were farmers, so she says that she can’t help but love plants. She began collecting and creating unique pots for her plants, and with great success, starting selling her plants at yard sales at her home in California. She then began painting with oils and continued creating anything she put her mind to. Her father was a cabinet maker who taught her the art of woodworking. Judy says, “He must have been a good teacher because he kept all ten fingers, and I still have all of mine.” Her father made jewelry boxes, and Judy would help him finish them.
Lundy moved to Tabor in the ’90s and soon began selling her creations out the back of Ev’s Beauty Bar on Lidice Street. She did this for many years while continuing to craft her art, search for interesting pieces to add to her collection and learn new skills. During this time, she developed an interest in the Czech Republic and Czech heritage clothing, jewelry, and art. Judy is not Czech herself, but she fits right in with the large Czech population in Tabor.
One way that Judy sources her items is on eBay. Through eBay, Judy met and developed a friendship with Michaela, a woman from the Czech Republic. After an online friendship of 7-8 years, Judy decided to travel to Europe and visit Michaela. Judy has since traveled to visit her friend Michaela in Desna, Czech Republic a total of three times, and she hopes to travel there again.
Judy said that her trip was extremely freeing because after leaving the United States to backpack solo in the Czech Republic in her sixties, she knew that she could do anything. When she returned from her trip, she decided to open a store.
She made that dream a reality by opening Loving Hands Gifts in the Yankton Mall on October 1st, 2015. During her time in the Yankton Mall, she was successful and enjoyed what she was doing. However, because of renovations and other businesses coming and going, she had to move her store six times within the mall.
Like most business owners, Judy had to close her store when the Covid-19 pandemic struck at the beginning of 2020. Yankton Mall management asked her if she would like to move her storefront again, but instead of going through that hassle, she decided to construct a building in Tabor. Judy lives in Tabor, and she knew that she would appreciate the 2 block commute versus the 17-mile commute to Yankton.
Judy wanted her store to stand out, so she constructed a bright red steel building on main street. She chose red with black and white accents because red, white, and black are the Czech colors that represent Tabor. She also plans to plant all white flowers around her building to make the red and black pop. The building is handicap accessible, and all aisles are at least 32 inches to fit wheelchairs.
She officially opened Loving Hands Gifts in Tabor on April 1st, 2021, and she has enjoyed a steady stream of visitors. Loving Hands Gifts sees a lot of local customers, but it also draws business from Nebraska, Sioux Falls, and other surrounding communities.
Loving Hands Gifts is full of unique treasures for sale including Czech clothing, Czech dolls, German items, scarves, wood items, ceramics, lamps, jewelry, and SO much more! Starting around August 2021, Judy will put up her Christmas collection and keep it up all year round. You can find Loving Hands Gifts on facebook.com/Tabor.CzechDays.Lovinghands. Contact Loving Hands Gifts at (605) 760-6066 or through the Facebook page.
Loving Hands Gifts is part of our new Co-op Connections Card program, and Judy will be updating her discount quarterly. View the current Loving Hands discount on our website or on the National Co-op Connections Program website.