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“The Watchers” is a film adaptation of the 2022 book of the same name by A.M. Shine.
Review: “The Watchers”
Published June 13, 2024

New Dinkytown store has high-end fashion covered

Dinkytown is known for many things, but high-end fashion isn’t really one of them.

“When you think Dinkytown, it’s more like Everyday People or Urban Envy ­- the consignment places,” said psychology junior Kaydi Didrikson.

But armed with designer jeans and an admitted obsession with fashion, entrepreneur Stacy Larson is trying to change that.

On May 20 she opened a boutique called Covered on the corner of Fourth Street and 14th Avenue Southeast. The store specializes in high-end jeans, she said, most of which start at $150.

Larson, a former retail buyer for a St. Louis Park boutique called Q, said that while she worked there, she saw people would pay higher prices for quality jeans.

“You can buy three $50 pairs of jeans and hate them all, or you can buy one pair for the same price and wear them all the time,” Larson said.

The store also carries a variety of clothing, much of which she can sell for less because of the prices of jeans, she said.

“For me, (fashion) is about mixing it up,” Larson said. “So I have a lot of different stuff, and it’s pretty much every price point.”

But the fact remains that Dinkytown largely is populated with college students who aren’t known as the biggest spenders.

Several students, like Didrikson, said they didn’t think they’d be shopping there; they just can’t afford it.

“I think there are students on campus who will pay higher prices for clothes; I’m just not sure how many,” Didrikson said. “(Covered) will probably get a lot of people stopping in and looking around, but I don’t know how many of them will buy.”

But Larson remained optimistic, citing a similar store on the University of Wisconsin campus in Madison.

“I think of Bop in Madison,” Larson said. “It’s crazy how much business they do, and already, a lot of girls that come in here go, Oh, it’s just like Bop!”

Larson also thinks her store will cater to an underserved market here on campus.

“At Q, I sold to a lot of girls from the ‘U,’ so I thought why not make it more convenient for them?” she said.

She said that although she could have put her store in Uptown or downtown, there already are many stores like hers in those areas.

Liz Stigen, who owns Urban Envy, another Dinkytown clothing store, is said she is excited about her new neighbor.

“I don’t see it as competition, I see it as having more people coming to Dinkytown to shop,” she said. “When I went to school here, Dinkytown was really fun and funky, and it’s kind of lost that.”

And with special touches like her “inspiration boards” inside the dressing rooms, which she covers with pictures clipped from fashion magazines, Larson hopes to personalize customers’ shopping experiences.

“You can go to Marshall Fields, but you’re not going to get real help,” she said. “I want people to know that I know my product and that I can find a fit for them.”

Skott Johnson, the Dinkytown business association president, agreed that diversifying the stores in the area and drawing more people are important. The opening of Covered, he said, might be a step toward that.

“I’m encouraged by it,” he said. “We need a better mixture of business here.”

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