The Joy in Retail!

You hear so much about the brick and mortar retail experience dying but in our eyes the idea of Retail is simply changing. We have seen a lot of larger big box stores leaving various areas or going out of business all together which makes many worry or wonder what’s next?

Over the last few years I have spent some time really focusing on the trends, the shifts, and how to successfully grow a sustainable business that keeps customers engaged and excited about the true joy the retail experience brings. One of the things that has been at the forefront of my mission since we began this journey is partnerships and collaborations. Something that is so special to The Refinery and what has helped make the business what it is today.

Roughly six months ago we began a a styling service called our Refine Style Box program. It is a program I remember launching and having a goal to sell 60 boxes over the course of the next year. Little did I know that we would reach our goal in the first month of launching the program!

Throughout the last six months we have had the opportunity to improve, tweak, and perfect the service as a whole while gaining customer feedback and it has been such a great experience for our team. As we have watched this program grow, we are now excited to officially share that we will be adding a special feature to this program that now provides a service to styling the entire family!

You are probably wondering wait… You’re now going to carry an expanded version of kids and men’s clothing? and the answer is simply no we are not.. Instead we are partnering with an incredible business that many of you know and love.. Once Upon a Child! Once upon a Child is the largest national franchise specializing in reselling gently used kids’ clothing, shoes, toys, and baby gear. Most franchisees are moms or dads who were customers first and now have made a career bringing this unique retail experience to their community. The Mankato and surrounding communities are so blessed to have Renee who has been the owner of the Mankato location for the last 20 years!

You will soon be able to purchase a Style Box with an add on addition for your children! These boxes are perfect for an upcoming wedding, family photos, or simply the perfect little box to treat you and the kiddos for any special occasion (Sizing ranging from Newborn to 16/18 .) The best part of this feature is the affordability, uniqueness, and simplicity it brings. Allowing you to put the money you are saving back in your pocket or investing more into the photographer/ special occasion. We will also have an option that is specifically for the kids. Back to school shopping? My kid just grew like a weed shopping? Milestone Photo? We have you covered. The program will allow you to tell us what you are hoping or looking for and we will do the work for you! We will also mix in items throughout our existing baby/kid section in store.

Kudos to my sweet kids for being my models! I was able to dress all 5 of them head to almost toe (They don’t like shoes) for just under $40 utilizing this program.


This is the dress I would have selected From The Refinery to match the kiddos pictured above! I would have been able to outfit my entire family for photos for under $100

Outside of the Style Box addition, we will also be coordinating outfits and color themes each week in store at Once Upon A Child Mankato (Additional locations coming soon!) Allowing you the opportunity to select from numerous gently used/loved boutique brands along with many others. These color themes will also match themes we have going on throughout all Refinery locations. We will also be working with a few other retailers around to help coordinate Dad’s outfit 🙂

We couldn’t be more excited for the launch of this new partnership! Two women owned businesses embracing the changes of retail while continuing to keep the experience joyful. The program will officially launch online Tuesday July 30th! We hope you enjoy this new partnership as much as we do.

Ashleigh & Renee