Local shops and boutiques kept up with the times—whether those times were within the context of the pandemic, social justice, our ecosystem, or what’s trendy. After running through this roundup of stylish standouts, find more MN-made gift ideas by checking out our Holiday Gift Guide, too.
When Gov. Walz said to mask up, local makers leapt to action. SeedNStyle, a “Black/trans/queer AF” fashion label focused on socially conscious apparel, sewed Kente cloth into its designs. Indigo & Snow artist Annabella Sardelis hand-dyed bamboo fabric. And St. Paul designer Scott J. Lehmann went crazy with the color blocking. The message: If you gotta wear it, make it your own.
When Shayla Owodunni bought her first penthouse in Northeast, she filled it floor to ceiling with plants. Then she started a blog about it called The Plant Penthouse. Then so many people asked her about interior styling and plant care, she launched a concierge service to help them live happier, greener lives. Consultations can be conducted virtually or on location, and her suite of services includes touring local garden shops; teaching clients which plants work where and why; and, most importantly, tips for keeping each one alive.
The pandemic has sparked behavioral change across the board, and Tare Market, Minnesota’s first zero-waste store, enables a greener way to buy groceries. While starter kits save the world one camping/shopping/road trip at a time, other items address every aspect of our daily lives with humanity’s future in mind. Hey, it beats tossing everything in a bin and hoping for the best.
Even when we’re masked up, Larissa Loden’s new collection can do the talking for us. “SSDGC,” from her quarantine craft kits, stands for “Stay sexy, don’t get COVID.” “For <3 George” is on a bracelet that donates all its proceeds to Color of Change. And, of course, there’s “Vote,” which is emblazoned on a collection that gained national attention after Michelle Obama wore a similar necklace at the Democratic National Convention. So what are you trying to say this year?
The prospect of a lot more time at home was brightened by Foxwell Shoppe + Studio’s arrival in Edina. Among expertly curated national and local houseware brands, actual interior designers stay within reach.
Sure, Duluth-based Loll Designs makes plastic outdoor furniture, but it’s not the cheap throwaway pieces of ages past. Instead, the company builds with post-consumer plastic saved from the landfill—about 400 milk jugs go into an Adirondack chair—and its sturdy pieces speak to contemporary minimalism with rich hues and playful lines. When COVID-19 hit, Loll designed a hospital bed that could be used for pop-up COVID centers, and for those spending more time at home, it also partnered with designer Brad Ascalon and New York firm Ghislaine Viñas to create a more lux version of its Sunnyside collection.