by Dennis Dalman
Joy Landeen-Shea of Sartell has just embarked on a new adventure — opening her own business.
Located in Sauk Rapids, it’s called “J-Whitty Creations and Boutique.” She decided to name the shop after her children — the “J” for Jacob, 12, the “Whitty” for the nickname of daughter Whitney, 11.
Some people have asked Landeen-Shea, “Why Sauk Rapids?”
She opened her shop there simply because the space she found for it was perfect — just the right “smallish” size, 600 square feet — and the price for leasing is so reasonable. Landeen-Shea’s husband, Patrick, did all of the remodeling work. The shop is located at 3 Second Ave. S. just down the street from Jimmy’s Pour House and next to the Sauk Rapids Herald building and “Bonnie’s Home Decor More.”
J-Whitty Creations and Boutique offers Landeen-Shea’s hand-stamped silver jewelry, clothing, cards, accessories, incense and a line of natural-organic products made by “Purple Prairie” in Clearwater — oils, facial creams, lotions and bug sprays, to name just some.
It was Landeen-Shea’s metal-smithing, which she started six years ago, that led her to opening her boutique. She buys silver metal in sheets and cuts shapes from the sheets. She then hand-stamps them with names and designs for use on bracelets or necklaces. Many customers like to have the names of their children and/or grandchildren stamped on the silver items. Landeen-Shea also solders some of the pieces together to make intriguing jewelry accessories.
“I’ve always loved to make things,” she said.
She plans to introduce more and more locally made items into her boutique. One local product, for example, is made by her own daughter, Whitney. When her mother was talking about opening her own shop. Whitney asked if she could make doggie treats and sell them there to help raise money for the Tri-County Humane Society. Her mother loved the idea. So Whitney began searching the Internet for dog-treat recipes, and she began making the nutritious treats, which she forms into whimsical shapes, such as bones and fire hydrants. Every cent from every bag sold is donated to the humane society.
In the near future, Landeen-Shea plans to add to her boutique a variety of works by local artists — paintings, pottery, sculpture.
J-Whitty Creations and Boutique will be open two weekends (Thursday-Saturday) per month. Its locked-in regular weekend will be the second one each month. The other open weekend will likely vary from month to month. The next open weekend will be Thursday-Saturday, April 12-14. The hours of business are 1-5 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday. Once school season is done, the hours will be from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. every day of the weekends the shop will be open.
For more information, call Landeen-Shea at 267-1985.