North Optical Expanding on Washington Avenue Next Month


Chris Wheaton, Owner of North Optical, at His Black Box Storefront at 93 Washngton Avenue on the East End of Portland.

Colorful Glass Frames from a Fremch Desigmer. are for Sale at North Optical.

“The new space at 68 Washington Avenue is far more than I ever intended,” said Chris Wheaton, owner of North Optical, this afternoon.  Chris was talking about his relocation in early June to 68 Washington Avenue – the last site of Silly’s – a popular eatery established by Dierde Nice and her sister that went bust a few years ago under  new ownership.

The new space is 1,200 sq. feet – much larger than his current 300 sq. feet spot at the Black Boxes at 93 Washington Avenue.  Chris was one of the first businesses to occupy the Black Boxes back in August of 2018.  He started looking for a larger space several years ago and it was only recently that he found that location – just down Washington Avenue from his current location.  “This space is far larger than I ever intended.  I was thinking of closer to 800 sq. ft., but this was an opportunity too good to pass up,” Chris said.

The larger space will permit Chris to hold art events and host trunk events at this space.  He said his inventory is well stocked for now and no inventory expansion plans are immediate. That will happen gradually.  The larger space will allow Chris to do more admnistrative work on site rather than at home. It will also allow him to be more creative in his design plans than he is currently allowed at the Black Boxes.

More than half of his inventory is from overseas; France, Germany, Japan, Italy, Belgium and Denmark.  Overseas manufacturers are more intricate than American manufactuers and there are fewer American manufactuers currently..

“It’s about being able to breathe,” said Chris taking a big breath late this afternoon as he considered his many creative opportunities at his new location.  A pop-up business will replace North Optical

North Optical is closed on Sunday and Monday.  It is open the rest of the week from 11:00 am – 6:00 pm.

For more information on North Optical, please visit post herein dated March 22, 2022.