New Grand Rapids boutique upcycles vintage goods for home, gifts, souvenirs

Deborah Johnson Wood

Angie Seabert says that in the hotel business, out-of-town visitors are always asking where they can buy souvenirs. She now has an easy answer: Minty Keen, her new boutique of upcycled, vintage and handcrafted goodies.

Minty Keen, in the Ledyard Building at 125 Ottawa Ave. NW, is situated just a short walk from Grand Rapids' downtown hotels and the DeVos Place convention center. Seabert plans to capitalize on that location. Her quirky collection of works by local artists, repurposed and reused home décor items, fresh flowers and Michigan souvenirs could help tourists fill up their suitcases before heading home.

"I worked in the hotels and had people asking about Michigan key chains and other things, but I'm not into plastic, I'm into handmade," Seabert says. "I have a nice mix of small items like magnets, key chains, drinking glasses and post cards from local artists that all have 'Michigan' on them."

But, Minty Keen isn't just for the out-of-towners – it's for anyone looking for that one-of-a-kind gift or the perfect accent for their home.

Seabert worked in the floral industry for six years and will soon offer small plants and fresh flowers. In the meantime, the shop is blooming with the works of local artists, such as Lisa Price's block print tea towels and pillows, Amy Hofacker's watercolors and pillows shaped like a Michigan license plate (they spell out ArtPrize) and Jacob Zars' sculpture and illustrations.

Events at the store will feature ReFab Fridays where customers can bring in an item that needs some fabric or new colors to get ideas on how to repurpose it. Knit-Wit Wednesdays invite knitting enthusiasts to come in and get some pointers from Seabert's mom, Sue Mesbergen.

Grand Opening events are Friday, September 17 at noon. Regular shop hours will be Tuesday through Thursday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Source: Angie Seabert, Minty Keen; Anne Marie Bessette, Grand Rapids Downtown Development Authority

Deborah Johnson Wood is development news editor for Rapid Growth Media. She can be contacted at [email protected]. Development News tips can be sent to [email protected].

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