Frazee woman Aleisa Jopp has always dreamed of having a "nitchty little shop" in Frazee. Back when her father owned the Skyview Theater (where the Hostel Hornet is now), Jopp dreamed of one day turning it into an antique store and coffee/wine bar but, when Jopp's father passed away and the theater was sold, Jopp was at a loss.
She was accumulating repurposed projects and various other antique-y items all throughout her house. With nowhere to sell them, her kids started saying she was becoming a hoarder. She couldn't get her cars in her garage because it was full of stuff, and a few other rooms in her house were full too.
"I said, 'I've got my vision for this. You wait and see'," Jopp recalls telling her kids.
But soon she began to grow restless herself. She couldn't find the right place to build or rent. Most rental spaces she toured needed a lot of work, and Jopp says she just didn't have the time or money to put into a place.
"I was coming home from work one day, having a bad day," she recalled, saying she drove down "main street" in Frazee, her hometown, thinking "is there any building for rent?"
That's when she stumbled upon the little "Pop Up Shop," located just behind Bender Realty, located in the old bank on the corner of Main Avenue and Lake Street.
"I said, 'You know, I could make this work'," she recalled, adding that she was actually worried she wouldn't have enough inventory to fill the space.
Jopp says Amber Bender handed her the keys that day and, from there, Jopp painted and put in a little extra lighting and then began moving her pieces out of her garage and into her shop. Before she knew it the place was plumb full.
She says she, along with her sisters and mom, have always been "artsy fartsy," and they all have more repurposed items than they know what to do with, so she's not likely to run out of inventory any time soon.
And the community response to the little shop has been good. Jopp says it was important for her to open her business in her hometown of Frazee, and the community members seem to be pretty grateful she stuck local instead of opening in another area.
"I've been open three Saturdays now, and it's just been over-the-top phenomenal," she said, adding that she's hoping to expand her hours soon, particularly for the tourism season but, for now, she's still getting the hang of things.
She's still waiting on a sign with her business's name, the Chic Shed Junque Boutique, and her son is helping her set up all the right technology so she'll be able to accept credit cards.
And, speaking of her kids, Jopp says they're no longer telling her she needs hoarder therapy - she finally got the "junque" out of her garage and her cars back in there.
"My son came in the store when I first opened and said, 'Mom, wow! You are going to be great in the summer time!'" she recalled with a smile.