In the loop: A guide to the North Loop's thriving retail scene

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March 18, 2014 // UPDATED 9:49 am - March 19, 2014
By: Jahna Peloquin
Jahna Peloquin

The North Loop is in the midst of a veritable renaissance. After a wave of new residential development in recent years, retailers are now flocking to the neighborhood. A dozen of the Twin Cities’ hottest shops having opened within less than a square mile radius of one another. Not bad for a former shipping and warehouse hub.

This spring three more retailers are popping up in the district: Seattle outdoor clothing company Filson, upscale, Detroit-based watchmaker Shinola and Twin Cities’ own designer clothing boutique Grethen House. It will be the first Minnesota brick-and-mortar shops for Filson and Shinola, which will split the space formerly occupied by Dunn Bros at 3rd & Washington; it’s the second for Grethen House, which has maintained its 50th and France storefront in Edina since 1953.

After hearing about a storefront opening in the neighborhood, Grethen House manager Maggie Brindley said: “We jumped on the opportunity. I think there’s definitely a clientele for Grethen House that sticks to the urban setting.” The approximately 1,000-square-foot store will offer a scaled-down, contemporary selection of many of the same brands as its 50th and France location, including Yigal Azrouël, Comme des Garçons, Martin Margiela and Raquel Allegra.

Filson and Shinola are also capitalizing on the North Loop boom. “Filson and Minnesota share an everlasting enthusiasm for enjoying the outdoors, which makes it the perfect location as we expand our retail footprint,” said Filson CEO Alan Kirk in a press release announcing the opening.

MartinPatrick3, a menswear and home store, has been around since the beginning. Owner Greg Walsh first landed in the neighborhood with his interior design company and home store in 2001. (Then-named Walsh Design Group and ID-Inside Design, they’ve since been folded into MartinPatrick3.) The shop carries hard-to-find brands such as Public School NYC, Railcar Fine Goods and wings + horns as well as an apothecary and design studio.

“It just really felt like the North Loop was more eclectic,” Walsh said on what initially drew him to the area. “There aren’t the chain stores here, and having the historical edge with the old buildings is a big plus. It has a little more soul to it.”

Added MartinPatrick3 store manager Erick DeLeon, “More and more people are starting to recognize the North Loop as a legitimate option to spend an afternoon.”

Other relatively recent additions to the North Loop neighborhood include Arrow, a shop specializing in upscale, forward-thinking men’s and women’s lines; the Dayton brother-owned men’s shop Askov Finlayson; women’s contemporary boutique Roe Wolfe; and shop-within-a-shop storefront D.NOLO. For more on these and other North Loop retail fixtures, read on.

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Store: MartinPatrick3

Background: On the heels of its third expansion, men’s and design shop MartinPatrick3 is one of the North Loop’s oldest retailers —  and at 11,000 square feet, its largest.

Specializes in: Menswear, furnishings and interior designs from brands including Vince, Jack Spade, Filson, Red Wing Heritage and Railcar Fine Goods.

Where: 212 3rd Ave. N., Ste. 106, Mpls., 746-5329, martinpatrick3.com.

When: Established in 2008 at 121 N. 1st St. before moving to current location in 2010. 

Stores: Filson & Shinola

Background: The brands will open their first Minnesota stores side-by-side this spring. Filson was established in Seattle in 1897 as an outdoor clothing manufacturer, while the Detroit-based Shinola was a shoe polish company before being rebranded as a luxury watchmaker in 2011. Both are owned by Fossil, Inc. founder Tom Kartsotis’ Bedrock Brands.

Specializes in: American-made craftsmanship. Filson will carry a variety of signature luggage, leather accessories, apparel and outerwear, while Shinola will offer a selection of high-end watches, bicycles and leather goods.

Where: 228 Washington Av. N., Mpls. filson.com & shinola.com.

When: Opening late spring. The brands will share a preview reception on April 9 from 5–8 p.m. at North Loop restaurant the Bachelor Farmer. 

Store: Grethen House

Background: One of the Twin Cities’ longest-standing boutiques, Grethen House opened its 50th & France location in Edina in 1953 — and it still hasn’t lost its touch.

Specializes in: Fashion-forward designers like Rick Owens, Raquel Allegra and Yigal Azrouël and long-established houses like Maison Martin Margiela, Costume National and Carven.

Where: 212 3rd Av. N., Mpls. grethenhouse.com.

When: Opening in April. 

Store: Arrow

Background: Owned by Sarah Dwyer and Michael Basham, who worked together at now-shuttered Uptown boutique Intoto, Arrow carries on Intoto’s legacy.

Specializes in: A mix of “casual modern luxury” from hard-to-find, high-style names like Rachel Comey, L’Agence, MSGM and Steven Alan for women and Paul Smith, Rogan and Common Projects for men.

Where: 121 N. 1st St., Mpls., 339-1663, arrow-minneapolis.com

When: Opened February 2012.

Store: Askov Finlayson

Background: The menswear shop is one third of the Dayton brothers trifecta, housed in the same North Loop warehouse as the Bachelor Farmer restaurant and Marvel Bar.

Specializes in: Classic menswear and accessories from Barbour, Woolrich, Momotaro, Rancourt and the Norse Project, plus their in-house brand including their popular “North” stocking caps, duffle bags and American-made “Explorer” pant.

Where: 200 N. 1st St., Mpls., 206-3925, askovfinlayson.com.

When: Opened November 2011.

Store: Roe Wolfe

Background: One of the latest additions to the North Loop, Ashley Kilcher’s Roe Wolfe first popped up in Mendota Heights before finding its new home.

Specializes in: Contemporary “rustic-chic”-styled clothing from Ecru, olive & oak and Henry & Belle, plus jewelry by local line Carrier Pigeon, bags from Pendleton and cosmetics.

Where: 113 Washington Ave. N., Mpls., 294-6583, roewolfe.com

When: Opened June 2013. 

Store: D.NOLO

Background: Owner Veronica Clark conceived D.NOLO (Destination North Loop) as a co-op to bring together multiple retailers together in one location. Currently, the storefront features Clark’s shop-within-a-shop, Kindred. By the end of next summer, 50th & France designer boutique Bumbershute looks to join the ranks.

Specializes in: A mix of designer-luxe basics and accessories from designers out of New York, Los Angeles and South Korea.

Where: 219 N. 2nd St., Mpls., 916-7895, dnolo.com.

When: Opened October 2013. 

Store: The Foundry Home Goods

Background: Owner Anna Hillegass’ home store — housed in the same building her father owned and worked out of for 30 years — is a haven for the hostess with an affinity for clean, modern design.

Specializes in: Minnesota-made beeswax candles, leather goods and woodenware, plus linens by a women's weaving collective in Ethiopia, jute baskets from Morocco, ceramics from Portugal and glass soap bottles from New York.

Where: 125 N. 1st St., Mpls., 333-8484, thefoundryhomegoods.com

When: Opened September 2012. 

Store: Statement Boutique

Background: Statement is the second retail venture for jewelry designer Stacey Johnson, whose first store at 50th & Bryant in south Minneapolis was destroyed by a fire.

Specializes in: Johnson’s own handmade jewelry, plus other artisan-made jewelry, fashion, handbags and gifts.

Where: 212 3rd Av. N., Ste. 105, Mpls., 651-808-7663, thestatementstore.com.

When: Opened April 2012. 

Store: C’est Chic Boutique

Background: C’est chic owner Pam Pappas Stanoch is a former French teacher and international relations expert, who styled her store after Ile Saint-Louis shop Grain de Sable.

Specializes in: A French-styled mix of local and international clothing and accessories including brands Joseph Ribkoff, Anytra and Eva Tralala.

Where: 210 N. 2nd St., Mpls. 339-1600. cestchicboutique.com

When: Opened April 2010.

Store: Ribnick Fur & Leather

Background: Family-owned and operated since 1945, Ribnick Fur & Leather is one of the largest fur retailers in the U.S.

Specializes in: The Midwest’s most extensive collection of designer fur, leather and shearling coats and jackets.

Where: 224 N. 1st St., Mpls. 332-4321. ribnickfurs.com

When: Opened in 1945.

Stephen Vincent Design

Background: Stephen Vincent Design is a custom design jewelry gallery led by award-winning designer and master goldsmith Stephen Vincent.

Specializes in: Minimalist and contemporary styles in diamonds, gemstones, platinum and gold.

Where: 212 N. 2nd St., Mpls. 338-1481. svstudio.com.

When: Opened in 2010.

Lolë Twin Cities

Background: Lolë is a Montreal-based retailer selling women’s active wear. It just settled into a new space in the Dock Street Flats.

Specializes in: Women’s active wear that can transition from the “studio to the street.”

Where: 337 Washington Ave. N. 584-3014. www.Facebook.com/loletwincities

When: Opened March 8, 2014

 


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