Online businesses are often hard pressed to be described as local, especially by Grand Rapids standards. Chelsea Andrews, co-owner of Good Soul Vintage, with her mom Tina Andrews, bucks that trend.
Selling primarily on Etsy, these ladies know a thing or two about the vintage market, bringing vintage clothing, accessories, and home decor to the internet masses. A business since May 2013, the Andrews girls grew Good Soul Vintage out of a serious love for all things antique.
“Good Soul the name was decided upon because we feel our vintage items have a ‘good soul’ to them, just as you would say a house has ‘good bones.’ Sometimes they need a little TLC, but if the good soul is there the end result is vintage magic!” Chelsea Andrews stated about their name.
Beginning as a vintage rental company, they switched gears after one season to opening up an Etsy shop, citing that they underestimated the amount of time and effort a rental company entailed. In addition to their online shop, they sell their treasures at various flea markets including Downtown Market’s Vintage Street Market.
The women’s clothing choices don’t limit themselves to any certain period, with a strong mix of ‘70s menswear inspired pieces, bright patterns of the ‘80s, and flirty ‘20s dresses. Their housewares selection will make you want to pitch your current dishes and serving ware in favor of Good Soul’s.
As a testament to Grand Rapids’ growing vintage scene, Andrews disclosed that she chose Grand Rapids as a home base after realizing her dreams of opening up a brick and mortar shop. She relocated from Vermont last year and knew she had to be in a large enough of a metropolitan area to sustain a business, and Grand Rapids seemed like the perfect fit. ”I continue to be blown away by this city, the people, the culture, and of course the beer! The diversity of people and businesses creating here is amazing, and I can only hope to become a bigger part of the community of small business sellers and creators the longer I live here.”
Her love of vintage began at an early age, thanks to her mother. Once she went away to college, her passion continued to grow as she discovered that she could decorate her apartment on the cheap through thrifting. Her mother, who makes stunning bridal bouquets out of vintage brooches, would surprise her with care packages filled with beautiful vintage things often.
With a recent frenzy of online vintage shop owners showing off their glamorous lives on social media, Andrews was quick to let me know it isn’t as great as it seems. A typical day for her and her mom is nothing short of atypical, working from home, digging in dark basements of estate sales, and cleaning the stench and stains out of clothing. She sited lots of manual labor and sweat as well, but her passion was evident throughout : all of the blood, sweat, and tears poured into Good Soul Vintage shines through in their excellent selection of goods.
Like most online sellers, the Andrews girls don’t want to stop with Etsy. Dreamers and doers, these girls are excited for what lies ahead, and a second Etsy shop might be in store. “My mom and I have different styles and enjoy buying different items. We are really trying to define our look right now and that is why we are opening a second shop, to make our shops flow a little better.”
Whether you want to support a local business or have some serious vintage shopping to do, why not head on over to Good Soul Vintage’s online shop or Facebook and check them out?