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  • Writer's picturekathrinkim

Featured Boutique: Grace and Gumption

Updated: May 4, 2022

I had a client in Prior Lake a couple weeks back. So, I decided to take a walk around the business section on Main Street, checking out the local retail. There's some FUN options in this area! The first store I viewed had a lot of "Lake" themed clothing and decor. I continued down the sidewalk to a little shop with a friendly host and bought a quilted puff backpack for a gift. Around the corner was another boutique, I went to their stationary section. They had cards that made me laugh and I read every single one, purchasing the funniest. I meandered my way across the street to the bakery but... I never got there. I got distracted and drawn into the shop next door "Grace and Gumption". As owner Jill told me about the store's name, "You need a little grace and a little gumption in life".

The shop is on the southeast corner of Main and Eerie Ave SE at 16228 Main Ave SE in Prior Lake. It opened in 2018. I interviewed its owner, Jill, and asked how she and Denise came to decide to go into business together. Throughout their friendship they'd dreamed of owning a "little shop" together. They wanted it to embody their interests and inspirations. They wanted a place that celebrated "fashion, faith and friendship". But, they never took the plunge.

In 2016, Jill and Denise lost a dear friend to cancer and then another to a heart condition. These losses hit them hard. But, in their grief, they felt a new strength to move beyond the doubts and go after this dream. They knew nothing about the ins and outs of running a shop. They would learn as they went.

"Every Woman deserves to Know - SHE IS BEAUTIFUL."

On Grace and Gumption's website, you will see the phrase, "Every Woman deserves to Know: SHE IS BEAUTIFUL". This spoke to me. In my work, I hear women's self doubt and dissatisfaction with themselves. Jill and Denise see and hear this too. I asked Jill about this phrase on their website and she said, "There is no model of perfection. Every person is unique and beautiful," I agree.

As I walked through the shop, To my right was a display of household items and gifts sprinkled with inspirational sayings. In front of me and to my left were clothing displays and accessories.

I've been looking for certain items the last few weeks; versatile summer clothing options for clients. This shop had several of these items.

One - A Denim Jacket

The versatility of a denim jacket worn as a third piece makes it a "must-have" wardrobe item. I assume most have a denim jacket but, when I go into women's closets, I see that's not true. I own three in different denim washes. I use them all. At Grace and Gumption they had several options in different cuts and colors. I liked this relaxed light wash frayed raw edge jacket by HIDDEN selling for $98. When I saw it, I thought of one of my clients that needs a shorter jacket option. I knew this would be a great choice for her.

On a side note - For Summer months, a white denim jacket is on my "must - have" list too. Worn over a silk dress to patio dining or paired with cut off shorts and a tank, either way completes the look. This Lulu B travel linen jacket sells for $98.99.

Two - A Leather Tote

I appreciate durability. I'm hard on my purses and work bags. They have to be made to last. I am drawn to cognac brown leather; it's timeless and rich. I tell my clients when they find a cognac pump to grab it, they won't regret it. It's the same for leather totes. This Latico Van Bag sells for $315.99. Its cross stitching gives it a more relaxed vibe. Beautiful.

Three - Summer Shorts

These chino style shorts in a 5 " inseam by JAG sell for $48.00 These are pull-on shorts that have the look of a zipper front. They had me fooled. These could easily become your favorite Summer shorts! Grace and Gumption are carrying them in olive, white and this sunrise yellow.

Not every town has boutique options like this area of Prior Lake. They are fortunate. If you live in the area, this is a shop you will be glad to get to know. If you are visiting the area, you will want to visit Grace and Gumption. It's practical, fun and you can sense the spirit of friendship and joy when you are there.

Next time I visit, I will make sure to hit the bakery on the way out!

Happy Wardrobing!

St Paul/Minneapolis Stylist Kathy Banta

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