The magic has always come easily for Barry Avery.
“I always had an eye for balance, for scale, for color and merchandising,” said Avery, who is the creative force behind a Middleton wonderland called Fontaine Home.
Customers describe Avery’s retail space as magical, and when you step through the front door, you’ll see why. In every corner of this imaginative home and lifestyle store is inspiration from around the globe and endless ways to make a home beautiful.
Avery and his business are centered on transformation. He worked for years in the retail industry before pursuing a formal education and career in design. Avery made this career shift at the urging of a friend.
“He was the one who helped me realize I had a skill, a talent that others would pay for,” Avery said.
Avery launched a design firm and catering business, first working from his home, before opening a retail space.
“In order to show my clients my vision of what I was trying to do for them in their houses, I brought it to the retail level,” he said.
While Avery’s original store was located in Madison, he eventually outgrew the space and was looking for a change.
“I drove (to Middleton) and felt good about what was happening in the downtown area, the revitalization. It just felt good,” he said. “There was this buzz, this energy that I wanted to be part of.”
Fontaine has been open for two years in the Middleton location. While the pandemic has presented new challenges for small businesses like Fontaine, Avery said the location has been a good move. The store is open for walk-in customers but also has an online store and offers curbside pickup for people who prefer that option.
The store offers a wide range of seasonal décor as well as household accessories and “little luxuries” like candles. Avery said he strives to offer things that are timeless and will be cherished forever.
“I call it immediate gratification for the discerning interior design client or customer,” Avery said.
Avery’s design services include paint and color, custom furniture, renovations, remodeling work, plumbing fixtures and more. His design service typically starts with a house call to assess a client’s needs.
“I get a sense for their design aesthetic and try to give them what I think they will like, given my knowledge and expertise,” he said.
Avery said his design business has done well this year as people have placed a new focus on their home.
“They are realizing that home really should be a cozy place, a wonderful place, a place to regroup and gather with their families,” he said.
Avery is still taking on new clients and he’s more than happy to help bring the magic.
About Fontaine Home
7535 Hubbard Ave
Middleton, WI 53562
Hours: Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; Sunday by appointment.