Blog

Stocking Stuffers

I love searching for the perfect stocking stuffers. I think it's so fun to find sweet little treasures that remind me of that person. Here are a few of my current favorites in the shop.
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GRAY Turns 2 & Holiday Pop-Ups

Come help us celebrate as GRAY turns 2! We will have Room No. 3 pop-up and Bogart's Doughnut Co. treats.
Be sure to check out these other events happening on Water StreetAce General Store grand opening featuring music from Family Three and Brandon Werth art opening, THE GOLDEN RULE hosts Coffee Cart, 1130 Forever, Dinosaur Hampton, Esther Clark, Minny & Paul, Victoria Campbell, and Willful Goods, Brightwater, Clothing and Gear hosts Glass Baby, Excelsior Christkindlsmarkt

 

We are also excited to announce our Holiday Pop-Up Calendar.

November 25th: Room No. 3

  • Come shop loungwear and lingerie typically found at their Edina store.

December 2nd: GRAY Home + Lifestyle Holiday Wreaths + House of Verna 

  • A play on our Blooms + Bubbles from this summer, come grab your wreaths that were thoughtfully designed by us!
  • Newly launched House of Verna will be bringing some of her found home decor and clothing.

December 9th: Faribault Woolen Mill Co. 

  • Come shop Minnesota's own Faribault throws. You will be automatically entered to win an Ashby Twill Throw with any purchase. 

December 16th: Cait Courneya 

  • Cait Courneya will be here with original artworks, her famous prints and her latest addition of home goods. You can find wrapping paper (perfect for this time of the year!), tea towels and pillows. 

December 23rd: Abbey Holden Studio

  • Come meet Abbey Holden and shop her original pieces of art. She will also have some stationary and cards available for purchase. 

 

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Inside the Iris Hantverk Shop in Sweden

We've introduced Iris Hantverk to you before on the blog, but early this morning I received an email from them with a video attached. In the video, we get to visit the Iris Hanterk shop in Sweden and learn more about the company and the process behind making brushes. It was a gentle reminder of our philosophies behind GRAY and why my mom and I do what we do.

 "In the late 1900s century a small brush manufacturing started out in Stockholm. It was a successful movement so successful that it remains today. Today we are 13 employees at Iris Hantverk. The core of the business is the brush binding manufacturing at Sandsborgsvägen, Enskede – here 5 visually impaired craftsmen from different cultures make brushes according to an old Swedish tradition. We also work with visually impaired craftsmen in Estonia. Like us, they too have a history strongly connected to the visual impairments movement. Our design has evolved through the years but the craftsmen still use the same time honouring techniques used for over a hundred years. Now, as then, every brush is made by hand by visually impaired craftsmen. The brush handles are made from FCS certificated wood and the bristles are mostly from natural materials. It brings new dimensions to the concept of sensitively made by hand."
 
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Say Hello to Lightwell Co.

We are always on the look out for candle companies. If you've been to the shop, you've seen the wall that is completely dedicated to candles- you may say we are candle nuts. 

Lightwell Co. and it's minimal, matte white candles made it's way to our shop late this summer and since then we have made multiple re-orders thanks to all of you loving them as much as we do! They also recently added room fragrances to their product collection and they seem to be fitting in just right at the shop. I think it's time to learn more about the brand and the people behind it. 

Lightwell Co. Candle with Dry Use Face Brush, Organic Washcloth, and Grown Alchemist

This Texas based brand was established in 2017 by Morgan and her husband, Gary. Morgan says having her husband be so supportive is what pushed her to make her own candles. After years of hoarding candles (she had cabinets stocked with candles), Gary suggested that Morgan try to make her own. "So, that lead me to wondering the aisles at Michael's having no idea what I was doing. I began creating candles as gifts for family and friends because who doesn't love candles?!" But seriously.... who doesn't? 

Lightwell Co. Candles & newly launched Room Fragrances

The couple had a love for neutrals and clean lines and knew they wanted this aesthetic to be represented by their brand- something that was simple, yet beautiful. This is literally music to my ears. They believe their products can be used in many styles (modern, rustic or bohemian) because of the minimal aesthetic. It's all about the balance when decorating your home!

GRAY has high standards for candles and fragrances as does Lightwell Co.. Morgan began noticing head aches while burning candles she had purchased (often associated with paraffin wax and artificial fragrances so check your current candles list of ingredients!). She made it her mission to create a candle that was clean burning. This started with a custom blend of soy and coconut wax and essential oils. This ensures the candle is never overpowering while it burns.

"Our goal behind Lightwell Co. is to keep our products as natural as we possibly can while eliminating excess toxins released into the air we breath." 

White Tea Room Fragrance 

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The best things in life are CRUELTY free

 I always say that the shop is a true reflection of us. It's not just because we hand selected our favorite, small batched items and opened the doors. It's because before we began our search for products, we took time to consider our personal beliefs and incorporate them. When people come into our shop, they get a sense of us by seeing our curation, but some of the shop's best qualities may be difficult to see. 

My mom and I have a soft spot for animals. I have two pugs (If you've been in the shop, you've met the girls) and my mom has two beagles (you can find them popping up on my mom's instagram feed), but our love doesn't stop for our own. We knew this feeling had to be present at the shop. 

We've all heard of animal testing. In short, they test the chemicals that will eventually go on our skin on animals. This is done by force-feeding the chemicals to the animal, rubbing the chemical on the animal's skin and eyes, and finally the "lethal dose" to determine if large amounts of the chemical could cause death. I'm not going to subject you to more horrifying statistics, videos and pictures- you can look them up if you would like to witness the cruelty yourself. Scientists have proven that animals, in fact, don't react the same way as humans do (i.e. chocolate, hello??) and it is NOT mandatory by the United States. 

I am always shocked to see the brands that are still using this outdated method of determining if chemicals are safe for humans. Some major companies include: Proctor & Gamble, Estée Lauder, L'Oreal, and Johnson & Jonhson. If you dig deeper into these companies, you'll see that this includes (not limited to) major brands such as, Crest, Tide, Dawn, Clinique, Downy, Avon, Neutrogena, and Garnier. Follow the link to PETA's website and search the beauty and health products currently in your home and find out the truth. 

When it came time to decide on our apothecary brands, we knew we had to be selective and find brands that had the same beliefs as us. Grown Alchemist, By Rosie Jane, Woodlot and L:A Bruket are ALL cruelty free. We will continue to follow this standard for new apothecary lines we may carry in the shop and we challenge YOU to follow this standard in your life to help end animal testing.

L:A Bruket Hand Lotion $29

Woodlot Soap Bar $10

Woodlot Refreshing Mist $19

By Rosie Jane Rosie Roll On $39

Grown Alchemist Intensive Body Cream $31

 

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Blooms & Bubbles Every Thursday

 

Thursdays at the shop just got better. Stop by every Thursday from 2 until close for a fresh bouquet of flowers just in time for the weekend. We will have limited quantities, and each week we will change up the blooms. Oh, and we'll be pouring bubbles!


Every Thursday we will post a picture of the bouquet for that week on Facebook and Instagram

Want to make sure you get your blooms? You can call and reserve your bouquet ahead of time!

 

(June 6 Blooms: Peonies, Tulips, Kochia, Eucalyptus, and Veronica)

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MAY 6. POP-UPS.

GOLDEN RULE is turning two and we are celebrating May 6th from 11-5!

 

GRAY will be having local makers, Abbey Holden Studio, Sensorius Co. Candles, and WooDan. ONEHOPE Wine will also be sampling their wine. In addition to the tasting, part of the proceeds from each bottle purchased will benefit our charity of choice, Open Hands Foundation. ONEHOPE Wine also donates a part of the proceeds to a charity of their choice. See their impact here

 

GOLDEN RULE will host Neal, Winsome, Ashley Mary, Green Bee Juicery, Jenny Lemons, Kindred Blooms, and more!

 

We can't wait to see you!

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Australia's ST. AGNI

Founded on the coastal town of Byron Bay in 2014, Lara and Matt had a vision to create simple pieces reflecting the lifestyle of Australians. They use only the highest quality leather and fabrics to create their minimalistic designs. 

 

Basic Slide ($149)

Lara and Matt focused in on the philosophy that less is more (If you've spoken with my mom or myself, you've probably heard this saying before!). They wanted pieces that were versatile. Something that a person could use in everyday style as a part of their capsule wardrobe.

Momo Small Clutch ($99) 

Like us, they recognize that we are responsible for our environment. They strive to reduce waste as much as possible from shipping in re-usable dust bags to using small, local farms to source their leather. 

Jun Sandal ($159)

I've already taken the Jun home for myself. After putting them on, I realized just how comfy they are. The soft suede straps are thick and the addition of the heel strap is perfect for extra support. Plus, I couldn't get over the color- I'm sure you'll see me wearing them close to everyday this summer. And if you are liking their SS17 sandals, just wait until we bring in their fall mules. We are already obsessing over them. 

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Sweet Little Swedish Brushes - Iris Hantverk

In 1870, a small brush manufacturing, Iris Hantverk, was born in Stockholm, Sweden. The core business consisted of brush binding manufacturing. To this day, the brushes are still hand made by visually impaired craftsmen. They believe it brings a new dimension to the concept of being hand made. 

The philosophy of Iris Hantverk remains the same. They care for their craftsmen and the survival of the brush binding business. "We believe that many, like us, appreciate the feeling and quality of a hand drawn brush made of natural materials. 

 

https://www.grayhomeandlifestyle.com/collections/homecare/products/iris-hantverk-everyday-dishbrush

Everyday Dish Brush: The brush you will use (yep, you got it) everyday. This brush is made from beech and horse hair. Horse hair is soft and gentle to clean your daily mess without scratching. Once your brush has seen better days, purchase a refill instead of buying a whole new one. 

https://www.grayhomeandlifestyle.com/collections/homecare/products/iris-hantverk-round-knob-dishbrush

Round Knob Dish Brush: This dish brush, produced with the same materials as the Everyday Dish Brush, but with a slightly more adorable style. Good for pots and pans as well as everything else. 

https://www.grayhomeandlifestyle.com/collections/skin-care/products/iris-hantverk-dry-use-face-brush

Dry Use Face Brush: This is the softest brush you will ever touch. It's made from oak and goat hair. You should use the brush on a dry, clean face. No water needed on this brush since it will ruin the goat hair. Using this brush will remove dead skin and give the skin a fresh glow. I tend to use this little guy twice a week. 

 

See our full line up of Iris Hantverk products here 

 

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$50 & Under

GRAY's favorite gifts for under $50!

 

GRAY Pottery

Honey Pot $35

Water Cooler Mug $26

Toothpick Holder $12.50

Leather Works Minnesota

Wrist Zip $48 (Also Available In Black)

 

Pashmina

Cashmere Scarf $45

By Rosie Jane

$49 and Under

Haus Interior 

Candle $34 (All Scents)

Grown Alchemist

Amenity Kit $24

Body Treatment Kit $39

Fog Linen Work

Linen Kitchen Cloth $15

Fredericks & Mae

Extra Large 216 Matches 

Thread Lounge

Copper Water Bottles $39

 

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