Shopping Around: Bella Boutique

Bella Boutique makes a move to Minneapolis

As its name suggests, Bella Boutique promises to make you feel beautiful inside and out. Formerly located in Mendota Heights, Bella Boutique has recently set up shop at 50th and Xerxes in southwest Minneapolis. Minneapolis native Susan Engelhart bought the women’s boutique in 2011, when it was located in a historic building and attached to a coffee shop in the St. Paul suburb. When the building went up for sale, Engelhart decided to shift the business to its new location, where she’s already filling her niche. Engelhart said that she really watches customers to see what they’re interested in and bases her styles off of clientele feedback. What’s hot for summer? “Dresses, dresses, dresses,” says Engelhart, who strives to make sure that customers feel welcome and confident when they shop at her boutique.

“My observation is that women can be so hard on themselves,” Engelhart says. “I’m hoping to find something that helps them feel beautiful right where they are today, without the judgment. Everyone has features they want to hide and play up, and if we can find things that highlight their best features, that’s our goal.”

Bella Boutique will be partnering with Time Out Fitness this Thursday to provide tasty and healthy treats, merchandise discounts, and reduced rates for sweat sessions at Time Out. And the shop is already integrating itself into its new ‘hood: Bella will be participating in the neighborhood summer Shop and Stroll June 20-22, so for those who feel up for a walk, strap on some (stylish) sandals to peruse the area. And on June 24, Bella Boutique will bring in Twin Cities style blogger Sally McGraw of Already Pretty (who’s soon to be featured in our July issue—stay tuned!) to teach a class about using jewelry to flatter your figure and complete your outfits.

The events are designed to make shopping at Bella a welcoming and interactive experience. “The whole goal is to serve real women,” Engelhart says. “My experience in other boutiques was that I sometimes felt I was being sized up. I want people to feel welcome, not like Pretty Woman.”

Bella Boutique, 3100 50th St W. Minneapolis, 612-767-3131,