My husband traveled often this summer, leaving me home alone with a fussy toddler for a couple of weeks, so it was my turn. I thought about asking some friends to go on a trip with me, but to be perfectly honest, being social can be draining for me. If I really wanted to relax, going alone was the way to do it. I decided on Nashville, since I’d never been there, the food and shopping seemed good (two of my favorite pastimes), and it was a relatively easy drive from St. Louis. Mr. mindful closet called it my “all-reclusive” vacation.

 (clockwise from top left) Imogene & Willie, trying on Rick Owens at UAL, Mas Tacos, pasta at Rolf and Daughters, pants mid-construction at Elizabeth Suzann, more trying on, tacos at Mas Tacos, a cute house in Germantown, Rolf and Daughters. 

(clockwise from top left) Imogene & Willie, trying on Rick Owens at UAL, Mas Tacos, pasta at Rolf and Daughters, pants mid-construction at Elizabeth Suzann, more trying on, tacos at Mas Tacos, a cute house in Germantown, Rolf and Daughters. 

As soon as I got into Nashville, I headed for 12 South, the hipster-y area of town, and Imogen & Willie, the hipster-y-est store of all.  Imogene and Willie is in an old filling station, as most hipster places in Nashville seem to be, so it was a cool space. I’ve heard about their denim for years, but was slightly disappointed when I realized that they ONLY carry denim. Since I’m not in the market for a $300 pair of jeans, that was a pretty quick visit.

Next I walked down to White’s Mercantile. Cool stuff, nothing I needed. Tried Local Honey (vintage) - my 20-year-old self would have loved it. Next on my list was United Apparel Liquidators. Jackpot. Designer and couture fashions at more than 75% off. I had a great time searching through designers from Rick Owens to J. Brand. Ultimately, I didn’t buy anything for myself, but I will definitely go any time I’m in a city with one of their stores. Other places I looked but didn’t buy: Buffalo Exchange, H. Audrey, and Draper James (so not me, but paradise for prepsters!).

In between stores, I ate. Loved the hot chicken I had at Edley’s BBQ (my first choice, Hattie B’s, was closed when I tried to go). Went to Mas Tacos Por Favor - meh. I like the tacos here at La Vellesana on Cherokee better. Had a lovely solo dinner at the bar at Rolf & Daughters, amazing pasta and really beautiful space. Also grabbed coffee and a (delicious) snickerdoodle at Dose Coffee.

My last stop on my way out of town was at Elizabeth Suzann. I’ve blogged about my love for these clothes before, but hadn’t ever purchased anything because there’s no way to try the clothes on before you order. I wrote in advance to get an appointment to see the workspace and showroom and try on samples. Lydia, the “Head of Customer Experience”, gave me the tour and hung out with me while I tried on clothes for an hour. It was inspiring to see a business that started from scratch, created all their own systems, built up a loyal following, and seems to be honestly invested in their employees’ well-being. And on top of all of that, the clothes are really, really good. I ordered the Harper Tunic and the Artist Smock. Because none of the clothes are produced until an order comes in, I have to be patient and wait until my items are made and shipped. That in itself goes along with the philosophy behind the brand - these aren’t clothes to be bought on a whim and tossed after a few wears. They’re investment pieces that are classic, easy to wear, and long-lasting. I seriously can’t wait.  

Have you been to Nashville? What are your favorite shops and restaurants?