Lake-area communities are known for their distinctive vibe and charm, and the local fashion scene is no exception. Specialty retailers with stylish siren songs beckon shoppers to come and discover what cannot be found elsewhere.
Locals have their favorite fashion destinations, so we asked residents of Wayzata and Excelsior to let us in on which shops and boutiques in their towns are best for some retail therapy. Let the border battle begin between these two area shopping districts.
Meet Our Fashionistas
Natalie Hagemo, Mommalicious in Suburbia blogger
Hagemo’s personal style is comfortable yet stylish. She looks for fun fashion that is not too conservative and can camouflage drink and food spills whenever she’s enjoying herself at the lake or out on the town.
Kristin Anderson, comedienne and fundraising auctioneer
Anderson’s personal style includes simple and eclectic designs with no ostentatious logos. As an entertainer, she prefers to stand out in a crowd in unique, stylish clothes and loves to accessorize to jazz up a daytime look.
Anna Klombies, vice president of human resources for Sport Ngin
Klombies describes her style as classic for work and outdoorsy-comfortable for days at the lake or playing sports.
Claire Berrett, program director for an asset management firm
Berrett is a busy working mom whose style is flexible and adaptable to business meetings and volunteer work. She searches for effortless outfits that can be transformed with embellishments.
Appetite for Apparel~
The House of Amore and Fede
226 Water St.
“Amore and Fede offer a balance of color and glitz. The staff understands body type and recommends pieces accordingly, like beautiful flowing dresses. They are honest about what looks good on me. Some styles are a bit on the bling side—terrific for a night out.” —Natalie Hagemo
Impact of Excelsior
266 Water St.
“I love the cowboy hats at Impact. I love hats and wear them well.” —Kristin Anderson
“Impact of Excelsior carries men’s and women’s fashions. At first I thought the male owner wouldn’t know a thing about women’s fashion, but he does—and he’s great at dressing women. There seem to be fewer patterns and more solid colors in loose-fitting styles. There are also fun items like cowboy hats and boots.” –NH
Ooh La La
274 Water St.
“I always want to look better than my audience when I’m performing. I can count on Ooh La La to deliver something stunning enough for a performance at Bearpath Golf and Country Club. There are fashions in all sizes and amazing jeans that fit mature women but don’t look like mom jeans.” –KA
1786 W. Wayzata Blvd., Long Lake
“The casual clothing separates at Gear West are amazing. Patagonia cowlneck tunics and leggings are perfect for around town.” –Anna Klombies
“A girlfriend bought the most classic, stylish ring as a gift from Gear West. I love the versatile jewelry there.” –AK
647 Lake St. E.
“Side Door reminds me of a ‘secret find’ boutique in New York City. It’s a place where I can always find a great dress never seen on anyone else. There is also a great selection of designer footwear so I can find shoes to compliment the great dress I fall in love with.” —Claire Berrett
Fashion Avenue 2
810 Lake St. E.
Ecstasy in Accessories~
Ooh La La
274 Water St.
“The most accessories at the best prices are found at Ooh La La.” –KA
441 Second St.
“Bee Cottage surprises with accessories. There are gorgeous, vintage-inspired pieces like brooches repurposed into fabulous necklaces.” –NH
429 Second St.
“Antiquity Rose has true antique jewelry, and you get to eat while you’re there.” –NH
687 Lake St. E.
“The staff at Hot Mama is great at helping find the right accessory for your outfit. They always suggest a scarf or necklace to complement whatever clothes you’re trying on.” –CB
701 Lake St. E.
Home Décor & Gifts~
441 Second St.
“Bee Cottage is hands down the best place for gifts and home décor. It’s Pinterest in real life with everything switched around every time you visit.” –NH
207 Water St.
“Capers carries fun items suitable for getting a great laugh.” –NH
309 Lake St. E.
“Five Swans has an exceptionally helpful and attentive staff and great service. The offerings have a William-Sonoma feel in the epitome of a local establishment.” –AK
Blanc de Blanc
691 Lake St. E.
“Blanc de Blanc is perfect for hostess gifts or birthday gifts for girlfriends. I once bought a clear acrylic vase as a housewarming gift. It made the perfect holder for a bottle of champagne. There are also great lines of spa care and home fragrance.” –CB
Extracurricular Shout Outs~
400 Highway 7, Excelsior
“Excelsior Vintage is a good example of open-door-Excelsior friendly. Recommendations are great and wine tastings offer opportunities to try new things.” –NH
Judd Frost Clothiers
339 Barry Ave. S., Wayzata
“Judd Frost has exceptional hand-made clothes. A custom tailor is a great place to find clothes for your husband.” –AK
631 Lake St. E., Wayzata
“I’ve always loved Maha for great active wear. I’ve recently discovered the addition of unique dresses and other casual fun clothes at Maha. My latest purchase was a really fun strapless summer maxi-dress. There are tons of designers and exclusives to choose from. I am excited to see the updates.” –CB
Brightwater Clothing and Gear
256 Water St., Excelsior
“Don’t forget about Brightwater. You can always find fantastic seasonal and local sportswear there.” –KA
The fashionistas have spoken. Be sure to check out their favorite places to shop in Excelsior and Wayzata; but these retail connoisseurs want you to know how much they love the entire lake community. Each enjoys the boutiques and amenities offered in both towns, and leave up to you to decide which wins this retail border battle.