Just in time for the beginning of holiday shopping, Rehoboth Beach’s Electric Fish has opened a pop-up shop in Tanger Outlets Seaside.
Partners and co-owners John Bonanno and Amy Stewart opened Electric Fish on Penny Lane in downtown Rehoboth Beach on Memorial Day of 2018. The store specializes in lamps constructed out of interlocking quadrilaterals made from recycled vinyl.
Describing the lamps as a big puzzle, Stewart said they were approached by a Tanger Outlet representative three weeks ago about doing the pop-up shop. The woman thought Electric Fish was a cool store that made her happy, said Stewart, who was busy getting the final touches ready the day before the pop-up shop opened Nov. 4.
“That’s great, because it makes us happy, too,” said Stewart.
Bonanno said the lighting system has been around for 50 years, created by Danish designer Holger Strøm in 1973. He said he came across his first I.Q. lamp more than a decade ago when a neighbor brought one back from Thailand.
“I love them,” said Bonanno, on why he decided to open Electric Fish. “It makes me happy every day to be making the lights. I figure if they make me happy, then it will sell itself.”
Bonanno said he thinks Electric Fish is the only store in the world that specializes in making the I.Q. lamps. There are other stores where a person can buy the supplies, but Electric Fish will actually make the lamps for people, he said.
Bonanno said design possibilities are basically limitless and that his inspiration for new designs often comes from customers who want something specific.
“A lot of the time, they’re like, ‘Hey, can you do this,’” said Bonanno, pointing to Minecraft and Pokémon-inspired lamps.
Kids love the lamps, said Stewart.
“Their whole face lights up when the lamp turns on,” she said. “They make really unique gifts.”
Despite the building style and material, Bonanno said the lamps are sturdy. They’ve been used as soccer balls and volleyballs, he said, laughing.
Bonanno said they’ve signed a two-month lease for the space at the outlets. He and Stewart said, if nothing else, the temporary location will increase the store’s visibility.
The original location, in Penny Lane at 42 Rehoboth Ave., will still be open on weekends.
The hours for the Tanger Outlet location, 36470 Seaside Outlet Drive, Suite 1525, are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week. For more information, go to electricfishlights.com, email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Bonanno at 240-701-4961.