Hello, Treasure readers! Im Tanya Carnahan: wardrobe stylist, fashion blogger and your new shopping columnist. Ive loved fashion and shopping from the time my mom handed me a Sees Candies butterscotch sucker to work on in my stroller while she tried on half the shoes at Nordstrom. When I moved to Boise from Seattle six years ago, I started my blog StyleSpyGirl.com, writing about the local style scene and the areas fun boutiques as a way to get acquainted with the lovely people and places in this town.
As Treasure Magazines new shopping columnist, I am thrilled beyond measure to share with you some of my shopping tips, secret bargain haunts, favorite boutiques and beauty hot spots around the Treasure Valley. To start things off, I thought I would share with you my Top 10 list of favorite things from around town.
1. I LOVE IDAHO AND MY SILVER PENDANT NECKLACE OF THE STATE, made by Olive Wicherski (available at Bricolage, 418 S. 6th St. in Downtown Boise) in sterling silver (pictured above). You can even get a little heart stamped into it, near whatever city you live in. Tres adorbs!
2. RAW SHOWS: If you havent been to a RAW Artists Boise show at the Powerhouse, youre missing out. Local artisans from all aspects of visual and performing arts showcase their talents and hobnob with each other and their fans. I discovered my next favorite thing, at one of these shows.
3. MY SWEET LITTLE FOREST ANIMAL PLATES, made by local artist Jaidyn Erickson. When I spotted her booth at RAW, I instantly fell in love with her whimsical characters and minimalist style (pictured above). Someday her pretty dishes may be featured at high-end home stores such as Williams-Sonoma or West Elm, but for now, locals can buy them Downtown at Bricolage.
4. VIRGINN PURE FLAWLESS POWDER: A cosmetics company out of Twin Falls (www.buyvmakeup.com) sent me some of its new makeup products to try, and I fell in LOVE with this finishing powder. So soft, so smooth and all natural. With only four ingredients, it does the job of more expensive, high-end powders. Im obsessed with it.
5. THE VILLAGE AT MERIDIAN: Truly, whats not to love? Shopping, restaurants, movie theater, fountain shows and that lovely gathering square right in the center (thevillageatmeridian.com). Its a beautiful place, and hanging out there always makes me smile. Then I venture into Charming Charlie (a fun, color-coded accessories store) and go a little shopping crazy.
6. CAMILLE BECKMAN BODY LOTION IN MANGO BEACH NO. 2: Headquartered in Eagle and founded in 1986, this body products company (camillebeckman.com) has the secret ingredient to keeping my skin feeling soft, even on the driest days of an Idaho winter. The yummy scents are an added bonus.
7. MOMO FOOD OF THE HIMALAYAS: Founded by two Nepalese couples who settled in Boise, this sweet little hot spot (3223 E. Louise Drive, Meridian) is always packed with taste adventurers seeking an exotic experience in healthy eating. Pile your plate high with mouth-watering momo dumplings, rice, beans, veggies and chutneys (all made from scratch), and youll be instantly addicted.
8. LIGHTNING CAT HAT: Lets face it: This state gets downright frigid in the winter. My blood is still adjusting to the extreme temperatures here, but one of my favorite things when the thermometer drops is my Rainbow Kitty hat, pictured above, from local artisan Lightning Cat (aka Stephanie Espinoza-Levy.) With cute little ears and bright rainbow colors, wearing it always keeps me warm and cheery (when I can steal it back from my little girl). Available at Green Chutes, 4716 W. State St. in Boise.
9. THE IDAHO SHAKESPEARE FESTIVAL: Forget season pass; can I just get a lifetime pass, pretty please? Ive been all over the world, but Ive never experienced anything like this grand, outdoor auditorium with its stellar actors, fun musical numbers and comedy performances lighting up the summer evening. And yes, I will admit to bringing Girl Scout Cookies to a performance, in hopes of a little personalized mockery from the Fool Squad. (IdahoShakespeare.org)
10. DOWNTOWN BOISE: Boise is truly a big city with a small-town feel. I love walking around Downtown, with all its shops, restaurants, galleries and entertainment venues within blocks of each other. Any type of food youre craving is in arms reach. Fresh gourmet sushi? Check. Pay-as-you-go wine tasting? Check. Nightclubs and pizza and Saturday Market street shopping? Check, check and check! We have it all, in this fine little city (and throughout our Treasure Valley). Lets explore it together.
What are your favorite hot spots and shops? Email me your ideas and questions for Treasure at Tanya@stylespygirl.com. Watch my blog stylespygirl.com for a special feature about five new boutiques in the Treasure Valley that I think youll want to know about.