Urban Gypsy, Soapy Gnome bring artists together in downtown Goshen shops

Want to know where to find homemade soap, handmade jewelry and refurnished furniture in downtown Goshen? Read on.

Posted on June 24, 2014 at 5:14 p.m.

GOSHEN — One building. Two new shops. Multiple artists and artisans.

A pair of new businesses owned and operated by local artists have opened in downtown Goshen, both offering an eclectic mix of handmade, vintage and upcycled items.

Urban Gypsy
  • Location: 111 E. Lincoln Ave. in Goshen
  • Hours: 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays, 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays

Urban Gypsy has set up shop at 111 E. Lincoln Ave., and just below the business’ space is The Soapy Gnome. Both opened their doors in early June. Nearly everything in the two stores is created by the owners and a group of area artists.

Urban Gypsy is owned by Missy Wrathell, McKenzie Beiler and Kristin DeWulf. They refurnish furniture, make jewelry and accessories, and design home decor. Wrathell said the arts community in Goshen is blossoming and wants to give artists a place to exhibit and sell their work. There are about 25 vendors who have products for sale at their shop.

The Soapy Gnome has a similar concept. Owner Jenny Frech started selling homemade soap about a year-and-a-half ago at the Goshen Farmer’s Market and has since expanded to making other body care products such as lip balm and deodorant.

“I’m a do-it-yourselfer,” Frech said. “I’ve always done things like gardening and canning. I just read a lot of books, watched a lot of YouTube videos and taught myself and came up with my own recipes.”

The Soapy Gnome
  • Location: 111 E. Lincoln Ave. in Goshen
  • Hours: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays
  • The Soapy Gnome also sells products from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays at the Goshen Farmer’s Market, 212 W. Washington St.

Other artisans sell related items at Frech’s shop such as shaving supplies and bathroom and kitchen accessories such as hand towels, soap dishes, baskets and candleholders.

Frech does some business online, but she likes getting to know her customers face-to-face.

“I would not have a shop anywhere else because I love Goshen,” she said. “Goshen is my heart.”

Frech said she has noticed an upward trend of people wanting to buy locally and wanting to know more about the products they purchase, including who makes them. Other downtown businesses like the Gift of Gab and The Local have embraced the concept of artists teaming up together, she said.

“Each has their own spin on the idea of collaboration, art and functionality,” she added.

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