Ornamental Plaster Sculpting, Mural Painting, Faux Finishing, and Imaginative Interior Design.

Ornamental Plaster Sculpting, Mural Painting, Faux Finishing, and Imaginative Interior Design.
CLICK ON THE RABBIT ( yes, those are cabinets) TO SEE MY PORTFOLIO, AND LEARN MORE ABOUT MY SERVICES...theartofthehome.com

Monday, September 26, 2011

St. Paul Saturday

I really do have some seriously cool friends, as you may have figured out from the last few posts.  I spent this Saturday with two more, Cat Isles (bridgingtheuniverse.com), and Ann Viveros, (web.me.com/annviveros). 

Cat and Ann, Saturday morning, city style.
We planned a girl's day out, up in the cities, with Ann in charge of the itenerary, as she lives and works on the north side of Minneapolis.  We started with a plan to hit some funky junk and thrift shops, in Minneapolis and the northern suburbs, but that changed when Ann's neice suggested Sophie Joe's, and the restaurant on the same block, Day-by-Day Cafe, in St. Paul.  A quick look at websites informed us the cafe's hash browns have been rated "best in the Twin Cities" by the Star Tribune, and that pretty much decided it.

I started Saturday morning with a full tank of gas, but an empty coffee pot, so had to stop at the Kwik Trip for a very tall, very dark, slightly sweet and creamy cup of wake-up juice.  This scene as I pulled in, assured me that all is still right with the world, at least in my corner of it...
Saturday morning, small town style.  Three bikes, three fishing poles, three boys in the store stocking up on candy bars.
I met up with Cat in Jordan, and she drove us up to Ann's place, where we got a tour of her garden, before heading for St. Paul.  After breakfast at Day-by-Day Cafe, where the hash browns were indeed quite nice, we walked up the block to Sophie Joe's Emporium (sophiejoes.com).  Sophie Joe's, like many antique stores, has vendor spaces packed cheek to jowl, but unlike antique stores, the merchandise here is everything from brand new to slightly used to vintage, with a few antiques sprinkled in.
Collaged mural on the front of Sophie Joe's Emporium
There was every kind of teacup and glass doo-dad imaginable, a pair of Doc Martin wingtips for thirty bucks, that were sadly a size too small, and lots of vintage, new and nearly new clothing to tempt us.
That's Ann, back in the racks, wearing her wild zebra pants, and eyeballing a leopard print top.
I scored a bizarrely oversized ceramic frog, and a tiny pressed tin treasure box with a pretty pattern, but though I tried on nearly every hat in the place, didn't manage to find quite the right one.  What I really want is an antique top hat (reminder to friends:  birthday coming! :) )Still, this stall kept me happy for quite awhile...
A hat for every head but mine.  Sigh.
By the time we left Sophie Joe's, which was huge and packed to the rafters, we were all sort of blitzed on shopping.  We made a half-hearted foray into the St. Vincent DePaul Thrift Store next door, and did find a pillow cover in orange silk for Ann, and a green glass votive for Cat, then headed back to the car.  Ann had heard there was a plant sale at a place called Egg/Plant, so we headed there for a change of scenery...
You can't have chickens in the city limits of Belle Plaine, a farm community of 5, 000, but the City of St. Paul, like many cities across the U.S. is embracing urban farming.  Go figure.

I grew up organic gardening on a subsistence scale (though we did buy raw whole milk and eggs from a local farm, rather than raise our own), so I kind of got a giggle out of this store.  Who knew you could buy pre-packaged bags of compost, and fish fertilizer in prettily labeled bottles? Shoot, if you don't want to have a compost heap like mine (a ring of wire fencing on the back side of the garage), and if you can't get the fish heads from the neighbor kids(to bury with the plants that like that sort of a boost), you can buy all the same stuff, without the pretty lables, out here at Belle Plaine Country Store, for a whole lot less!  Of course, we can't keep chickens in the city limits out here, so I won't giggle too loudly at the city farmers!

As we headed back through Minneapolis toward home, Ann, Cat and I ended the day with a stop at Wilde Roast, where we had lovely coffee, served by lovely waiters, and a huge hunk of carrot cake, that was only handed over after a strawberry fan was beautifully cut, and placed on the plate with it.  Ahhh, perfection.  Though Portland, Oregon has been my favorite city since childhood, and Minneapolis has it's charms, St. Paul is truly a delight, if you like cities of old stone and brick buildings, and quirkily laid out streets.  If I wasn't so content in my beautiful old house, in my cozy small town, I might consider living in St. Paul...if only for the hash browns!

I don't spend all my time playing with my friends.  You can check out my portfolio, and the decorating services I provide, at theartofthehome.com.

If you are working on a decorating project yourself, and run into questions, feel free to ask.  If I have a solution to your dilemma, I'll be happy to share.  dawnmariedelara@gmail.com.

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