Say, have y’all noticed how many new stores have sprouted from the soil over the last few months? Who woulda thunk we would get such a great retail harvest during this economic drought! Shucks. There are all sorts of cool stores opening up on the main drag, selling everything from clothing to books, music, footwear and god-knows-what. I reckon you should go out there and take a gander at all the goods. Here are a few of the juiciest picks.
Raised from the ashes of a true Kreppa Kasualty, the new Eymundsson shop on Skólavörðustígur opened up in August in the remnants of the old SPRON bank. Unlike its monolithic sister-store on Austurstræti, the new shop is one cosy level with couches and tables in two corners of the place and an adorable patio outside. The whole place feels much more like a library than a bookshop. Plus, they’ve got the old Mál and Menning staff, sell coffee, have free wireless and are open until 10pm. That totally kicks the library’s ass!
After running his own vinyl booth at the Kolaportið flea market, Ingvar Geirsson decided it was high time to open up a real vinyl store in Reykjavík. Located on Hverfisgata (adjacent to Laugavegur), this new shop houses a collection of 20.000 used LPs, 8.000 twelve-inch records, as well as an extensive collection of new and used CDs and DVDs. The man also buys music and movie collections, large and small, so go get rid of all those old Limp Bizkit and Staind albums once and for all. Best of all, the store has the extremely humane opening hours of 11am to 9pm. Party on.
Always on the cutting edge of Reykjavík’s style scene, young designer Mundi has garnered international attention with his wild designs and effortless, high street-fashion. After a year of planning, he opened his own flagship outlet last month on Laugavegur. Located above another new store, women’s footwear shop Manía, Mundi sells versatile, unisex clothing geared for colourful people who like to have fun with their wardrobe, as well as two other local brands.
This purely Icelandic line of women’s streetwear was started by designer Heiða Birgisdóttir in 2000 and rapidly took off to now being sold in about 1.500 stores in thirty countries. The line has been sold in various shops in Reykjavík but they have finally opened up their first flagship store, right on Laugavegur. It opened with a huge bang in late September, hosting the GusGus album release show in their backyard skate park. Full of quirky, classy and comfortable gear, their designs could be worn as easily at a club as on the slopes. A lot of it is pretty gender neutral too. Look for the bright pink shop.
Opened by Svavar Pétur Eysteinsson and Berglind Häsler of the band Skakkamanage, this new fair-play music shop is a collaborative effort between four important entities in Icelandic indie: Kimi Records, Kimi co-label (or whatever) Borgin, gogoyoko.com and Skakkapop. They have set up a cohesive space in which they can pool their efforts and support each others’ endeavours. The store opened up in mid-September, right before the Réttir festival, for which it served as ticketing headquarters and a daytime off-venue location. In addition to CDs and records, one can purchase band T-shirts and art made by local musicians. Expect lots of in-store appearances and stuff until Christmas.