The little strip of Ridgewood Road – aka “Ridgewood Row” – in Maplewood just over the South Orange border has developed a reputation as a retail destination that seamlessly blends the funky with the down-home.
Visitors can savor an artisanal ice cream sandwich, score a mint condition Burberry blazer, stock up on deals for back to school shopping, peek at some very cool art, get a haircut and pick up their dry cleaning – all while barely walking more than a few paces.
On a steamy summer afternoon, Kim Baugh of Milk Money children’s consignment shop was stocking the store with back to school items. “I’m pretty excited about the fall,” said Baugh, who ticked off Janie & Jack, Lands End, Mini Boden, Abercrombie and Hollister as some popular brands. The shop, which carries up to size 14, will also have a selection of winter coats, snow boots and ski equipment.
Milk Money will reopen for the fall on August 15.
Next door, Cupcake Corral owner Joe Ramaikas was offering homemade ice cream sandwiches in addition to the regular selection of baked goods, iced coffee and iced teas.
Ramaikas plans to host evening events, such as live music, in the fall. “I appreciate all suggestions and ideas,” he said, “or if anyone wants to rent out the space for their own group activity or meeting.”
Renaissance Resale Boutique has a huge selection of fall clothing, shoes, handbags and jewelry, and an entire floor of antiques downstairs. West Village is also chock-full of quirky consignment clothing.
Across the street, The Framing Mill’s summer sale continues with 15% off custom frames and 30% off ready-made. Owner Rick Hauser also operates GAS Gallery and Studio, which will have two new shows opening in September: “Elusive Imagery,” curated by Joe Walentini (Sept. 7 – Oct. 6, with a reception on Sept. 15), and Lisa Murray w/ Mia Cose Bella (Sept. 9 – 15.)
Ridgewood Row is a mix of the old and the new. Case in point: Stage One Hair, which has been on the street for 15 years. Stylist Alexis Proctor, who was finishing up work on longtime client Helen Carswell, said the shop styles men, women and children for a fraction of the price of comparable salons. Fell's Dry Cleaners rounds out the retail roster.
Store hours vary; check before visiting.
Next week, Maplewood Patch will check out the scene on Springfield Avenue.