Photo: Adam Towner
Expert: Amy Lynn Chase aka “Punky”
Where she shops: Worcester, MA
About Amy: A Worcester native, Amy is the voice behind PunkyStyle.com, a blog where she chronicles her adventures as a mobile boutique owner (meet Haberdash), co-founder of the Swapaholics, and mom to two pups (Penny and Emma). She’s also founder of thehipsterbride.com and runs her own Etsy shop. She’s an entrepreneurial force, and a lady whose shopping advice I would follow blindly. Gather round, as she dishes her favorite spots to hit up in her hometown…
Spreedia: Top 5 places to shop in Worcester. Go!
1. Alexis Grace is a consignment shop hidden in one of my favorite neighborhoods in the city called the Canal District. You can find a complete outfit there for under 40 bucks. They also dabble in vintage and new items. I don’t think I have ever left the store empty handed.
2. StART on the Street. OK, so this is not really a store, it’s more like a really quick pop up shop featuring a series of local artists, crafters and designers. It happens 3 times a year and I always find the most beautiful things!
3. Architectural Garage is conveniently housed right next door to Alexis Grace in the Canal District. They sell odd and interesting building products, antiques and furniture that are salvaged from historic homes and buildings around central Massachusetts. It’s a creative person’s dream shop! You never know what you will find.
4. Toy Shop. This shop has been open since I was a kid. A step inside is like a time warp back to childhood—when toys were made of wood and built to last. Every time we need a kid/baby gift, that is the first place we stop!
5. Seed to Stem is like a real life Pinterest board. They sell terrariums, container gardens, plants, antiquities and oddities, art, vintage items, home decor items, and crafts. If that doesn’t impress you, they also create exquisite fresh floral design for weddings, events, and parties. I would love to hire them for a DIY terrarium/container garden workshop!
S: Most recent purchase at these shops?
A: I shop at all of them pretty often, but I just bought the most amazing vintage Turkish rug bags from Alexis Grace for $10 (I’ve seen them on Etsy for $100). I also buy a lot of salvage wood pieces from Architectural Garage in hopes to use them as displays in my future vintage shop.
S: Favorite boutique/flea market/shopping destination outside of Worcester?
A: My favorite shopping location is an antique mall in Sterling, MA. It’s housed in a beautiful old barn and has hundreds of different antique vendors inside. It takes about 2 hours to look through the whole place.
S: Major advantages to having a boutique on wheels?
A: Having a store on wheels is way more complicated then it seems. But my favorite thing about Haberdash is that it’s like a piece of art. It’s inspiring and beautiful to see, which is harder to pull off in a brick and mortar location.
S: Farthest you’ve traveled with Haberdash?
A: I think Northern Vermont was the longest trip we took. We did a 3-day music festival called Tweed River Fest in 2009. It rained the whole weekend and we were running for cover most of the festival. But it was still one of my favorite Haberdash ventures.