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Monica Navarro, owner of Dreams

Atwater Village -- After losing the lease on the space that housed her long-time home goods and apparel store, Individual Medley, Monica Navarro wanted to do something different. Thus, Dreams, the new lifestyle boutique that opened late last year on Glendale Boulevard.

Dreams is one of Navarro’s three shops: Wine + Eggs, a neighborhood market, is just down the street from Dreams. Then there’s Wine & Rock Shop in Yucca Valley.

With the aid of artistic partner Adi Goodrich, Dreams has a surrealist vibe fitting to its name, the centerpiece a hand-sculpted rock painted blue. The store offers a mix of home goods, apparel, books and more.

Navarro grew up in Paso Robles. She moved to Los Angeles approximately 15 years ago, first living in Silver Lake, then Atwater Village, where she now splits her time with Yucca Valley. She took some time out of her schedule to discuss Dreams and that large blue rock.

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The Blue Rock at Dreams.

How did the closure of Individual Melody lead to the opening of Dreams?

At that time, I had all of the emotions - panic, stress, “what am I going to do?” I could close and just say I’m giving up. I can move, just pack it all up and move it. Or just rebirth and do something completely different, and that’s what I decided to do. I have a team, an amazing crew of people to help me. We thought about what’s inspiring us now. I wanted to bring something new to the community that felt like where I am now.

What do you mean by that?

I think that we’re just in a place where we’re looking at sustainability and products that really speak to us in a way that are things that you’re not going to find everywhere. We’re working with local artists, people from all over, to bring a mix of things that I think are very special and not found everywhere. I want to be unique but still approachable.

How’s Dream different from Individual Medley?

We’re trying to evoke different feelings that you have when you’re in Dreams. I wanted to evoke a feeling of walking through different spaces, almost dreamlike, that you’re going through different worlds.

Who is your customer?

We service Atwater; we service the Eastside. I think that over the years we’ve been a community hub. It was important to create that community feeling.

Tell me about the blue rock.

I think it is my favorite part of the store. I gravitate towards it. It's just the most vibrant blue ever, and it kind of, to me, is the focal point of the whole store. It’s so monolithic.

Why Atwater Village? What’s your connection to the community?

It reminds me a lot of my hometown Paso Robles. When I first saw Atwater 10 years ago, I saw so much love in this area. I think I had made a wrong turn trying to go to [the Silver Lake] Trader Joe’s, and I came down this hill, and I was like, “What is this magical area?”

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