Crushing it: New gallery/boutique open in Nevada City
Hollie Dilley has been a lifetime roller skating aficionado. It was only natural she’d open a business catering to the hobby.
Crush, at 405 Commercial St., is a new gallery/boutique in downtown Nevada City. Ninety percent of the items on sale were hand-crafted by Dilley, including the custom-made roller skates.
Dilley said it’s been exhilarating to see how residents have responded to her endeavors.
“The community has been welcoming,”she said. “There’s a lot of facets of what Crush is. It is a gallery, a skate shop, a place to have workshops for artists and it’s a place to get involved in the skate community and sign up for skate classes.”
Dilley was always a roller skater and she played derby for seven years. After the birth of her second child, she wanted to hit the local skate park. She ordered a pair of skates, though with supply chain delays mushrooming across the globe she instead bought a pair of Nike sneakers. She then got the plate, wheels and toe stop online to craft her own skates.
After fashioning several more pairs for friends, Dilley had breakfast with a friend she formerly did derby with. She was encouraged to find a retail space.
“Her current fascination with ramp/park skating has always been a part of the active side of her life,” said husband Robb Savage. “She recently found a way to inject her creativity into the world of roller skating. To satisfy her unreal artistic output, she needed a brick-and-mortar store to sell her creations.”
The store’s name — Crush — has different meanings, Savage said.
“‘Crushing’ something means to do it well, to make a statement,” he added. “Having a ‘crush’ on something means to love it. This business is for all genders and identities, but it definitely has a feminine undertone, being run and sustained by female skaters/artists.”
The grand opening happened April 30. About 200 to 300 people attended. There was a display of roller skates and accessories, ceramic mugs and lots of roller skate-themed gifts.
Although he has known Dilley for 15 years, Savage said he’s still surprised by her creative art output.
“She has a deep seeded passion for roller skating,” he said. “She always needed a place to show and sell her vast array of art. And once she started making custom skates, it made sense to get a storefront below her studio and give it a shot.”
Dilley hopes to host jam skating instructions once a week.
Upstairs from Crush in her studio, she anticipates convening monthly art workshops by the first week of June. There will be sign up sheets at Crush, or on her website — crushnevadacity.com — or Instagram profiles: @crushrollershop and @crushnevadacity
“I want to bring in people I’ve met through my derby skating experience and include some friends I went to Humboldt State with and are now professors,” said Dilley. “And the other part of the business, before I started to get a brick-and-mortar store, I did pop-up events because skating became so big during the pandemic.”
William Roller is a staff writer with The Union. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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