Closing up shop

Liberata D’Aversa says goodbye after 45 years

By Sean Delaney

Liberata D’Aversa got her start in the clothing industry, and is now closing the final chapter on a career exactly where she wanted it to be – in a comfortable chair in her own clothing store.

D’Aversa opened the store in September of 1971, 45 years ago this past month. She began the shop with her husband after a few years working as a seamstress for some clothing makers.

“I opened the store with joy, because I like to go into the clothing business,” D’Aversa said from her store. She is content, her life’s passion complete, fulfilled and ready to step away. “Back home (Italy), I learned to sew and enjoyed (work in a) clothing store. Sewing is my passion and I keep very well.”

D’Aversa was married in Italy in 1964. In 1965 her husband came to Canada about four months before she made the move.

“I worked at a factory sewing, nine months then my son is born and then I stay home,” she said.

Her husband, while his intrepid wife was at home, and pacing the floors, itching for something to do, had an opportunity to buy the building beside them.

“He buy the building and I open the store, D’Aversa said. And D’Aversa’s is a family store. Something for everyone, the proud owner describes. She envisioned a social place, where you could sit with people you knew and trusted and talk life, love and clothing, all over a nice espresso.

“And still I am here, it’s 45 years later,” she said with a smile.

When first opened, D’Aversa lived above the shop with her husband and their growing family. The two children she had were four and six when she opened the shop. In 1976, a daughter arrived and made it three.

“Now I feel sorry because I want to retire, but my life changes and I want to enjoy a little bit my grandchild and family,” D’Aversa said. “Because I am always here, six days a week, and it’s very hard.”

She said she still enjoys the work, the store and the lifestyle she maintains within it, but it is time for her to retire, enjoy her family and travel.

“I want to enjoy my life, travel, go church by church, go to the holy lands, and enjoy time with the kids,” she said. “Everything has come true and my dream has come up.”

Aurelio D’Aversa’s Department Store is celebrating Liberata’s retirement with a retirement sale that will feature 25 per cent off all in-store merchandise commencing in November.

The store is located at, 70 Plunkett Road Unit #6, Toronto. 416-749-7365