St. Petersburg, known for its sunny beaches and vibrant art scene, is welcoming an exciting addition to its shopping landscape – EnnYe, a new boutique nestled on Beach Drive. Owned and curated by two talented sisters from Zimbabwe, EnnYe is a treasure trove of unique clothing and home goods adorned with striking African prints, coupled with an awe-inspiring art gallery showcasing the timeless beauty of Shona stone artwork.
EnnYe, named after the owner’s mother, started in 2016 with a storefront in San Francisco. EnnYe soft-opened in June and will host a grand opening on August 4th, 2023. Matipa Mutsemi, EnnYe co-owner, says their Beach Drive store is a night-and-day departure from their original west coast concept.
“I wanted something that kind of matched how I felt about St. Petersburg, which is this eclectic place,” said Mutsemi.
The boutique boasts an exclusive collection of 100% cotton clothing, many featuring authentic African prints the sisters source from all over Africa. While EnnYe is known for its bold, striking hues, Mutsemi says they have intentionally created garments for the Beach Drive store using solid and contemporary prints, like a traditional polka dot dress.
“We went outside of the colors that we normally would use because, one, we’re in Florida, and two, we’re trying to include everyone,” said Mutsemi. “So you’ll find some greens and yellows, other colors that match the weather and vibe of St. Pete. We put some real thought into the collection that we opened here.”
Mutsemi and her sister Mercy Nyamangwanda work directly with printmakers in Africa, ensuring each item in the boutique is a genuine representation of the country’s artistry and craftsmanship. From elegant dresses and stylish tops to eye-catching accessories, every garment reflects the vibrancy and essence of Africa.
“The brand is part of our identity and our desire to share our culture, really sharing Africa and the fun and the happiness in print with the world,” said Mutsemi. “I hope that people who visit the store get a chance to learn my story, know a little bit about the Shona culture, and find something that sticks with them in their hearts and their minds.”
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Mutsemi says when they choose a print they love, they don’t reuse it again, meaning each item in the store is a limited edition. They also make sure none of the fabric goes to waste.
“I’m very much into sustainability. I like to use up the prints 100%,” said Mutsemi. “In our store, you’ll see that I’ll have something in a dress, in a bench, in a cushion, and then even some of the bags are made out of just the little square of fabric that’s left. It’s not surprising to find a print that’s used across the board.”
EnnYe goes beyond being just a clothing store; it doubles as an art gallery, showcasing the remarkable talent of Zimbabwean artists. The focal point of the gallery is the stunning Shona stone artwork, a renowned form of sculpture that originates from the Shona people of Zimbabwe.
Shona stone sculptures have gained international acclaim for their exquisite craftsmanship and ability to capture the raw beauty of nature and human emotion. The gallery at EnnYe, which is managed by Mutsemi’s husband, features an array of sculptures, each one telling a unique story through the skill and creativity of the artists.
EnnYe is more than just a boutique; it is a reflection of the passion and love Mutsemi and Nyamangwanda have for their homeland. The boutique’s chic yet warm ambiance, coupled with the breathtaking artistry showcased, creates an experience unlike any other on Beach Drive, making EnnYe a must-visit destination in St. Petersburg.