If you lived in Minneapolis during the eighties/early nineties, then you remember the heyday of Uptown. Back then it was a combination of “Purple Rain” meets “Sid and Nancy” with a little “Pretty in Pink” thrown in. This was an area of Minneapolis that was gritty, edgy, and eclectic. It was burgers and bands at The Uptown Bar, used Levis at Urban Outfitters, punks (rockers, not trouble makers) hanging outside McDonald’s, malts at The Ediner, movies at Suburban World, and calamari at Figlio after my shift at Benetton. There was little in the way of chain shops and restaurants as uniqueness was key. It was where and who I wanted to be. But, as with most things, it faded away. Oh, it was still there and nothing had changed, but perhaps that was the problem. Gen X’ers were growing up and out of the Uptown area. And it was stagnate for a good decade.
Fast forward to the year 2012 and things have definitely changed. Uptown has been undergoing a revitalization over the past five or six years, and while the D.I.N.K. (double income, no kids) in me loves it, the eighties teen in me longs for the way it used to be. Whatever I feel about it, there’s no denying this has been a much needed financial injection for the area. Gone is The Uptown Bar (where you could always find a famous person having a beer) and in it’s place an Apple store. Urban Outfitters has gone mainstream and Calhoun Square now houses a huge Lifetime Fitness. There’s a Columbia and North Face store right next to each other…absolutely NOT what Uptown used to stand for. But I guess this is the face of a new generation and I’d better get used to it.
There is one new addition in the neighborhood that I can really get behind. Covered Uptown is an amazing boutique that is locally owned and operated and appeals to both sides of my personality. Located on Lagoon, it’s in my old neighborhood and right next door to Core Power Yoga. It’s a very up and coming section of Uptown. New apartments and retail seem to pop up every day. And if you’re in the retail industry, this is a very good thing.
Covered Uptown has done an fabulous job of blending the old and the new. The shop is very visually appealing, has a homey feel, and you always feel very welcome. And the reason for this is Covered owner Stacy and her gals, Megan and Bridget. Not only are they fun and beautiful, they are super knowledgable about the product they carry and the world of fashion. They are very talented stylists and can help you find exactly what you’re looking for (and things you never even knew you needed). The boutique carries what I consider to be premium brands-Seven, Current Elliot, Wildfox, Dolce Vita, Ella Moss (just to name a few)-and some really unique pieces as well. And to keep it interesting, they offer events such as private shopping parties, spray tan and brow wax events, and on occasion break out the champagne. If you’re looking for a gorgeous, style filled boutique with the old Uptown vibe, I suggest you run to Covered Uptown. It’s a “no pressure” zone, just lots of fun. You’ll be very glad you did.