Boutique of the Week: Chop Suey Tuey
2913 W. Cary St.
Richmond, Va. 23221
Chop Suey Tuey is a bookstore with a hip style and a community- oriented way of doing business. The book boutique, located in Carytown, specializes in art, photography, architecture, design and literature.
Chop Suey Tuey, the second location of the recently closed Chop Suey, will be expanding to two floors to accommodate the store closing, said Ward Tefft, the owner. The original Chop Suey Books, which was near VCU’s campus, was forced out of business because of rising rents and business concerns.
Chop Suey sells books one probably wouldn’t find at Barnes and Noble or Borders, Tefft said. The store has a lot of underground items and rare books. It also has a section specializing in tattoos and graffiti.
Chop Suey owners put a lot of focus on Richmond artists. Upstairs, the store has a gallery with openings every month where it shows local artists’ works. Also, once a month, Tefft brings in a local writer to read his or her work, Tefft said. Chop Suey also occasionally hosts national writers.
Tefft is involved in Books-On-Wheels, along with Shelley Briggs. Books-On-Wheels is an organization promoting literacy and alternative transportation that gives away free books and free bike repair. The two travel on the “Mo’ Book Mo’ Bike Mobil,” a heavily graffiti-ed bus filled with books and bicycle parts, to different communities in the Richmond area.
Velocity Comics has a small section in the store where one can find new graphic novels for sale. The store has been gradually increasing its selection of comics.
Chop Suey Tuey sells new and used books, though the original Chop Suey only sold used, Tefft said. If you can’t find what you are looking for the store will order it and give you 10 percent off. Also, if you have some books lying around that you want to get off your hands, Chop Suey buys used books!
Contact staff writer Alexandra Varipapa at email@example.com