Ever find yourself in a funk and need a little retail therapy for the cure? (Uh, yeah. Story of my life.) Well you’ll be surprised to hear me say that sometimes retail therapy doesn’t have to involve spending any money. There are some stores or restaurants that immediately lift my mood when I walk into them. And as I walk around, tempted by pretty things right and left, I can still leave the store without dropping a single dime. Now that is something for a husband (mine in particular) to be proud of! Here are my top three happy place rankings. By the way, the fact that they all start with C’s is a total coincidence.
1) Crepes, Etc.
My mom and I went here for lunch yesterday. It wasn’t our first time. More like our third or fourth. But like every time we’d been there, we walked in and immediately started salivating at the sight of the menu. Breakfast is served all day. Their desserts look phenomenal. There’s a full coffee and espresso menu. And the “Etc.” part of the name consists of everything from bottles of wine to fresh fruits. It’s just a charming cafe, nestled in the Central West End of St. Louis. A perfect place to hang out and read a book. Especially when the weather’s warm and you can eat on the patio. You St. Louisans (and anyone in town for a visit) oughta check it out if you haven’t been before.
You walk through the revolving doors and into this clean, open, airy, two-story retail space that makes you want to snatch up everything in sight. But I’m going to be honest. The contemporary look that many of the items at Crate & Barrel take on makes for very plain, simplistic home decor. Yet the way they make it dazzle in-store makes it seem ten times more remarkable. And honestly, the stuff I have bought from Crate & Barrel just doesn’t look as spectacular in my house as it does when I’m buying it. Take this turquoise vase, for example.
They really do a number on me. But I appreciate the fact that they make me feel all fuzzy inside when I shop there. And yes, I can still feel happy if I walk out of the store without even reaching for my credit card.
Photo courtesy of The Container Store
Let me start by saying that I’m organized. But I’m not a neat-freak. When I clean, I do it well. But the question then becomes, “how often do you clean?” Um, not as much as my mother would like me to, I’m sure. But oh, The Container Store. It’s so full of organization! File folders, containers in every size imaginable, gadgets for anything, closet-organizing systems and more. My most favorite part, though, is Christmas season when they bring in bins upon bins of wrapping paper! (I’m a nut for patterned paper. And yes, I do realize that is strange.) But you know, The Container Store has managed to do something very well. They’ve made cleaning and organizing something to like. I wonder how many people walk in there and feel inspired to go clean their closets. For a retailer to actually be able to achieve that is rather brilliant.
So… What places top your happy place list?