Holiday gift shopping right on the square

by Jessica McDonald

Indianola’s newest gift shop, The Victorian Cottage Shoppe, offers the community a variety of unique items.

“There is a different atmosphere than what’s been here before,” said owner Vicki Schmidt.

The Victorian Cottage Shoppe replaced the Carousel Gift Shop, which was one of the three local gift shops on the square that closed in the past year.

The shop offers several specialties such as antique reproductions, gourmet foods, children gifts and soy candles.

Items that will target Simpson students are also sold.

“My 20 year-old daughter helped with the purchasing of merchandise,” said Schmidt.

Students will enjoy the single-serve hot cocoa packs, popcorn and soups.

“These make good dorm food,” said Schmidt.

The Victorian Cottage Shop also features candle fixtures, which are candles with an electric light.

“Since candles aren’t allowed in most dorms, students will be able to get the affect of a candle with the candle fixtures,” said Schmidt.

Schmidt’s motivation for opening her own store was her joy for giving people gifts. She also likes to help people look for special things.

“When people buy things from my store, it’s like giving a gift everyday,” said Schmidt.

Since its opening Oct. 10, business has been really good. Most of the advertising has been through word of mouth. Schmidt’s husband, Tom Schmidt, instructor of management, sent an e-mail to all Simpson faculty letting them know the store was open.

The official grand opening for The Victorian Cottage Shop will be sometime in early November. There will be specials and door prizes during the grand opening.

“We’re still working on the children’s gift room and the Christmas room,” said Schmidt.

The Victorian Cottage Shop is open Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturdays 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.