Hi, I’m Hannah, and I’m a shopaholic. Ok, not really, but there are few things in this world that get me more excited than a good day spent shopping in cute boutiques and local shops. I love a good bargain and knowing that I’m shopping small really does make my empty wallet feel a little more fulfilled at the end of the day. When I’m in a new city is no exception. I love checking out the local flair in the form of boutiques, antique shops, and the like. So it only felt right that I pop into a few local gems while I was visiting Minnesota this last January. Allow me to be the first to tell you that Minnesota is more than just the Mall of America — it’s actually home to what I believe to be some of the best local shopping opportunities in the Midwest. The Twin Cities area of Minnesota is boutique after sweet boutique of quality-made items that amount to some of the best shopping I’ve ever experienced. Curious? Take a closer look at some of my favorite Minneapolis stores below!
Golden Rule Collective
If you’re willing to go a bit off of the beaten path and drive 15 minutes out of Minneapolis to Excelsior, MN, I can guarantee that if you make a stop at this one shop it will be all worth your while. Golden Rule Collective is the lovechild of a more locally-focused Anthropologie and a more art-forward Madewell. As an artist, I love anywhere with a bit of spunk and a lot of art on the walls. Golden Rule has both, and a lot of everything in between. From natural beauty products to art prints made by local artists to trendy and sustainable footwear to minimalist jewelry, this space truly has something for everyone. There is not a single bare space on the walls or on the tables or shelves, yet nothing feels chaotic or out of place. The place itself just bursts with life and beauty and intentional design. While the interior of the shop is decidedly more feminine forward, be sure to check out Ace General Store for a more modern-day masculine vibe. It’s located just to the left of Golden Rule in a retrofitted garage and definitely worth the visit.
The Foundry Home Goods
I’ll be the first to admit that doing housework is about the last thing on my list of things I’d like to fill my day. Just one stop at The Foundry Home Goods and I felt inspired to tackle any stack of dishes or dust bunny, obviously armed with any one of The Foundry’s adorable kitchen brushes or wooden brooms. Stocked with beeswax candles, olive-wood tasting spoons, incense cones, even natural children’s toys, this place is my own homemaker’s daydream. Plus, any store with two of the cutest chocolate lab shop dogs is a winner in my book. Oh, and in case you were wondering if it can get any cuter (it can’t), the dogs names are Turnip and Ruby. This shop would be my first stop for a housewarming gift for a friend, beeswax candles for my home, or just a midday bout of inspiration in a warm and welcoming space.
Let’s set the scene: twin sisters who live on the same street in Minneapolis decide to open up a THE CUTEST vintage shop in the Twin Cities. The rest is history, and we know it as Arlee Park. In the last two times I’ve visited MN (both in the last month), I’ve left with the sweetest reclaimed vintage finds that have quickly become staple wardrobe pieces. Because let’s face it: while some of us would love to enter into a Salvation Army, estate sale, or Goodwill with the kind of hunting skill it takes to emerge victorious, that kind of foraging takes some serious gumption and style. Arlee Park takes the guesswork out of vintage shopping with their artfully curated selections and quality finds. They then style their treasures in a little corner shop that is home to some of the most glorious natural light I’ve ever seen. I didn’t even know I was a vintage earring hoarder until I visited. Since then, I’ve added four pairs to my collection, two of which are from Arlee Park. And while the finds are sweet, the shopkeepers are even sweeter. Do yourself a favor and stop in at Arlee Park, whether to find your next signature vintage piece or to just soak in some artfully-curated inspiration.
by Hannah Senn
Hannah Senn is a regular contributor at Badala and is the Creative Director at Moveable Feast + Co. We love having her voice in the Badala family and quoting Mean Girls non-stop. For more of her wanderings, see @hannahsenn on Instagram.