Last night I drove to the small town of Northfield, Minnesota in order to see my brother -- now a sophomore at Saint Olaf --perform in his school percussion ensemble.Battling a gnarly cold, I sat in the far back row of the concert hall. Coat on and pink mohair scarf wrapped firmly around my neck I alternated between bouts of paying attention, blowing my nose, clapping, and applying additional coats of petroleum jelly to my chapped lips
After the performance ended, my brother came over to give me a hug, drum sticks in hand. "How are you?," he said. "Good." He stepped back. "Really? You look... congested. Are you sick? You look sick." I told him that I was indeed feeling ill. "I didn't think it looked that obvious though." "Oh yeah, it was pretty obvious. Your whole coat-and-scarf -on-the-whole-time thing gave it away. And also, I could tell from your expression. You kind of looked like this the whole time -- " he rolled his eyes to the back of his head and staggered around on his feet, doing a pretty good imitation of someone suffering from vertigo-inducing sinus pressure, like I was.
Today am happy to report that I am decidedly on the mend. In addition to the large amounts of fluid I have been drinking,my improved disposition may have something to do with my recent visit to Idun, a beautiful little light-filled jewelry box of a store in Saint Paul.
Located on Selby Avenue, Idun (pronounced Eee-dun) is manned by Dahlia Brue and stocks a contemporary assortment of minimal, well-made clothing for women. A keen example of the power of a woman with a hyper-sharp aesthetic, Brue possesses a true editor's eye, buying for the store and while also designing Idun's interior prior to opening the doors in May of 2014. With lines like YMC, Samuji, and Rachel Comey represented, the shop is unique for it's playful brand of minimalism and sophisticated restraint.
Brue (who like my brother, can count Saint Olaf as her alma mater) had always wanted to open a shop of her own and after five years of working in the publishing industry has realized her dream at 495 Selby. A true evangelist of the designers she stocks, Brue's current favorites include Maryam Nassir Zadeh's oversized mustard blazer, a super comfortable sweatsuit ensemble by Base Range, and last but not least, a pair of tapered, drop-crotch, wide-wale corduroys from Band of Outsiders.
Everything in the shop is particularly beautiful, but Idun's selection of scents and personal care products should also be mentioned for their utility and simplicity. Miss Brue recently turned me on to using BioMarine Deep Water Squalene right before bed. This ultra-natural and super lightweight topical emollient is derived from Shark Liver Oil, with the ability to rejuvenate chapped skin and repair skin's surface texture seemingly overnight. Take that head cold.