By Scott Carlson
If a cat has nine lives, as the old saying goes, then a successful retail cat shop must be destined to survive for at least a second go-around.
After opening last September in St. Anthony Park’s Milton Square, Cat aMEWsement is already heading for a bigger, new location.
This month, the cat-themed boutique is picking up its feline treats, novelty toys, handmade items and other cat-themed goods and relocating operations to 278 7th St. E. in St. Paul’s Lowertown. Owner Nikki Christopher will take 1,650 square feet at her Lowertown venue, an increase from her current St. Anthony Park digs of 1,150 square feet.
Christopher said Cat aMEWsement needs the additional space for its steady and growing business.
“This (Milton Square) has been a really great place to incubate,” Christopher said. “I am more and more now a destination store. People come from all over to come here.”
Christopher said that going into business for herself has been a dramatic career shift. Prior to opening Cat aMEWsment, Christopher was a professional harpist and private music teacher. But with a personal change in her life, she looked for a new career that could support her.
“I knew I was making a new start,” Christopher told the Bugle last fall, “and I decided to do something that’s absolutely ridiculous, silly and fun.”
For this longtime lover of felines, starting a cat-themed boutique was the answer, Christopher told the Bugle’s Christie Vogt.
Last year, an opportunity arose in Milton Square: Studio Karlor, a boutique and gift shop, was looking for a sublet tenant, and owner Karlie Schraufnagel offered the space to Cat aMEWsement.
Cat aMEWsement is like “the cat version of Patina,” Christopher said, referring to the Twin Cities chain of gift shops. Online shopping is also available at http://catamewsement.com.
Scott Carlson is managing editor of the Bugle.
A story in the June 2023 issue of the Bugle incorrectly stated the new address of Cat aMEWsement. The new address is 278 7th St. E. in St. Paul’s Lowertown.
Also, the story misstated the business had started a kiosk at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. In fact, the business owner contemplated participating in the airport’s kiosk program but got a call in December 2021 that it was ending before she could consider participating in it.