Shop unique, handmade goods from Ohio artisans
Simply Vague, the new Polaris shop with a local focus, is celebrating its grand opening tomorrow, Sept. 28, from 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.
The store, located next to Saks on the mall's lower level, carries products from more than 170 area artists.
We talked with owner Andrea Archibald about some of her favorite crafters and why Simply Vague is Ohio-made only.
-Taylor Rogers, @rogerstaylorj
What will shoppers find at the store?
We have everything, ranging form food to furniture. We've got a lot of t-shirts, over 60 designs, almost all Ohio-themed. Really, it's a huge range. We have a lot of kids' clothing, a lot of home décor. Because we're all local, we have over 170 vendors, so we never know what we're going to get in the store. People send in applications every day.
What's the application process like for interested artisans?
You go through our website, which is shoplocalohio.com. There's a jury process for selecting vendors. We're really just looking for something that's unique and one of a kind and high quality.
What's the mission of Simply Vague?
We want people to do their replacement shopping locally. We want them to support someone that's real, rather than a big corporation from China. We want to keep jobs here in Ohio. If you do your Christmas shopping locally, you can give someone a better Christmas, essentially, knowing you supported a local artisan.
Any favorite items or vendors?
I love this hand-stitched leather line from an older man named John Brandon. He makes the most fantastic wallets, iPad cases, bags from leather, and it's all 100 percent hand-stitched, no machines involved. It's incredible. He's the sweetest man in the world, and I think he's truly talented.
Any thing special going on at the grand opening?
We'll have balloon animals for kids, and we're inviting all of our vendors and family members, so it should be a huge turnout.
Top: Jewelry from Simply Vague. Above right: A piece from John Brandon's line. Photos courtesy of Simply Vague.