If there’s one thing that Jill Evans and Wendy Lundberg have learned over the past 28 years as the owners of an independent retail store, it’s “never give up.”
Their persistence has definitely paid off.
The sisters from North Beverly opened Mona Lisa in 1991. The clothing, gifts and home decor boutique quickly gained a loyal following of customers who love their merchandise because it goes beyond the usual generic items found in most stores.
But like many businesses, their store faced economic challenges brought on by events such as the 9/11 attacks, the rise of big-box retailers, and the crash of 2008.
However, with hard work and an emphasis on personal customer service, Jill and Wendy kept Mona Lisa going—much to the delight of their customers, many of whom come from Beverly, Morgan Park and Mt. Greenwood.
The owners moved Mona Lisa last year to a new location at 14215 S. LaGrange Rd., #116, in Orland Park. The new store has received rave reviews, and Mona Lisa continues to delight customers with an inventory that is truly unique.
Women’s clothing in sizes small to 3X is available, and Mona Lisa has an amazing selection of jewelry, handbags and accessories.
For home decor, gifts, fragrances and candles, as well as baby clothing and gifts, Mona Lisa is a popular destination.
However, it’s been the owners’ focus on customer service that has allowed the business to thrive. Jill and Wendy want every customer to leave their store happy, and they provide free boxes and gift wrap. They also gladly stock merchandise that customers request and continually seek consumer input to keep the store fresh and full of incredible merchandise.
As they look to the future, Wendy and Jill are certain about one thing: they will continue to provide their customers with an outstanding retail experience.
“We are dedicated to presenting quality products in an assortment of prices,” the owners said, “and we promise exceptionally great customer service. We take an interest in our customer’s ‘likes’ and ‘needs’ to offer a more personal shopping experience.”
The women grew up in the parish of Christ the King Church, and they love serving their customers from the Beverly/Morgan Park and Mt. Greenwood communities, they said, because for over 100 years, these neighborhoods been “the” place to live in Chicago’s Southland, featuring gorgeous, proudly manicured homes and proximity to just about everything.
Despite the challenges of operating a small business, the women have resolutely maintained their support of local schools and charitable organizations.
As they look back at more than two decades of being in business, Jill and Wendy take satisfaction in knowing that they kept their customers happy and coming back.
“We’re still here,” they said with a smile. “To us, that’s an accomplishment!”
For truly unique merchandise and outstanding customer service, visit Mona Lisa. It is open Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, noon to 4 p.m.
For more information, call Mona Lisa at (708) 645-4729.