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Small business spotlight: Nest on Main

Business by: Joanne Kountourakis, December 10, 2021

Enter Nest on Main, a one-of-a-kind home marketplace in Northport Village, and you’ll be greeted by an eclectic collection of work from over 60 talented local artisans.

When Donna Moschella speaks about the origins of Nest on Main, she gets a little emotional. Her one-of-a-kind home marketplace is a platform for small businesses, a brick-and-mortar space that allows local artisans to showcase their work in a creative, supportive and engaging environment. “That’s what Nest is. Before I even opened, that was my thought,” said Donna. “I wanted to have a place, because Northport is filled – and all of Long Island – with so many talented people.”

When Donna first moved to Northport about a decade ago, she joined and volunteered in local groups to meet people. As a member of the board of directors at the Northport Historical Society, Donna said, she worked with wonderfully creative people while helping to plan events.

Donna was running a medical billing business at the time (and for 18 years prior to her most recent calling). “I was done,” she recalled. But she wasn’t ready to retire. “I said ‘This can’t be the last thing I do.’ I wanted to do something creative.”

A friend who recognized Donna’s knack for interior design suggested she open a “small home decor place.” Despite her limited experience, the more Donna talked to people, the more the idea materialized. And then the space at 135 Main Street – far from small – became available.

“I get emotional thinking about it because it was so serendipitous,” she said, choking up a little. “It came together on a wing and a prayer. I think if I had actually planned out a business model the way that I should have, I don't know if I would have had the courage to do this.”

Nest on Main was born in 2017. At the time, 10 vendors had their work in the store. Donna now showcases over 60 small businesses within the Nest, all local Long Islanders who rent space there or offer their work on a commission basis. “We try to find space for everything that fits,” said Donna. “It’s the most collaborative environment, given how many people and moving parts there are. It’s been an amazing experience. Everyone supports one another.”

While Donna occasionally solicits vendors, most of the artisans displayed in the Nest come via recommendation and word of mouth, and quickly form burgeoning relationships. The symbiosis, cohesion and overall business philosophy is evident in the store, and its schedule. The Nest hosts community workshops and pop-ups that bring attention to small businesses throughout the year, and for the first time this year is holding a holiday market for four consecutive weekends both inside the Nest and on its back patio.

“We wanted to make it in the spirit of the way they do the holiday markets in the city and in Europe,” Donna said. While she hopes that the Village will eventually follow suit and incorporate a market-like shopping event for the holidays on Main Street, “I thought it would be nice to start it in a small way here,” she said.

The holiday market runs every Saturday in December and brings an additional eight to ten rotating vendors into and outside of the market, selling everything from desserts to greetings cards, cheese, driftwood planters, succulents, and clothing for kids. Donna learns from each week that passes and is now incorporating music, demonstrations and free treats to entice shoppers to see all the market has to offer.

Nest on Main hosts its third of four holiday markets at 135 Main Street this Saturday, December 11, from 10:30am to 4pm, and its final holiday market on December 18. For more information, including Nest’s extensive schedule of workshops and other events, visit www.nestonmainmarket.com.

Jennifer Scully Designs’ line of “home decor with a conscience,” is ethically sourced, sustainable and vegan.

Various items from Sunken Orchard Ceramics are on display throughout the store.

An eclectic collection of work from over 60 talented local artisans on display at Nest on Main.

“Electrified” serving trays by Weingarten Woodworks.

An eclectic collection of work from over 60 talented local artisans on display at Nest on Main.

Goat milk bodycare brand, Beekman 1802.