This article couldn’t be more fitting, and this shop couldn’t be more fittting for what we are promoting this season and every season on 4th! Shop local, and support local, and find the perfect holiday gift!
We recently had the pleasure of chatting with Sonia McDowell (owner) at Nikola on 4th Street, whose moto is ,”When the universe closes one door they open another.”
For those of you who don’t know, Nikola is located around the corner from One Cycle Studio and has the most unique finds, for the holiday season and every season. We fell in love with the message Sonia is putting back into the world, which is making women feel beautiful at any age. The pieces at Nikola are carefully chosen with a story behind each, and a human being behind each!
So, Lets get to know Sonia and the shop (which has been on 4th since March 2014) a bit better!
What was the inspiration behing Nikola?
Sonia McDowell: Well, truly my friends. They saw a creative side in me, and urged me to pursue it, huge believers in having a creative outlet I started selling my own products; embellished jean jackets and hand made jewlery at the Calgary Farmers Market before it moved. When the market moved, I decided it was time to take it from a weekend gig to a full time gig, we were located in Inglewood prior and moved to 4th Street just about 2 years ago.
Well, that’s so wonderful! What a great way to start. What’s something many of us may not know about Nikola, that we should?
Sonia McDowell: From what I have been told I am the only natural fibre store in Canada. I do a lot of reaserach behind each prodict to make sure it hasn’t been laboured in a sweat shop. A lot of the items I carry are made in Europe and California, how ever I really try to bring in a lot of Canadian made pieces. The shop is about promoting women and artisans, all of our jewerly is locally made by myself and others. How ever my biggest thing is natural fibre, and there is a real reason behind why.
Not only is natural fibre better for the environment, it’s better for you! For the women 45+ having the changes in their lives and experiencing hot flashes, natural fibres can help rid you of that. For all women and just people in general natural fibres help balance horomones and allow your skin to breathe.
That’s something we had no idea about! How informative and good to know. So you do not just carry standard clothing items?
Sonia McDowell: No, I carry something for everyone and the products are unqiue. We also carry plus size clothing. One of the biggest messages I want to put out there for women is you can still look fashionable be fashionable and be you at any age. There is no set style, embrace your own style and we carry something for that! All women should be free with out any stigma, and just love what they wear and wear what they feel comfortable in.
Just truly be authentic, and you.
What’s a fun fact about yourself?
Sonia McDowell: That I am a bit of a rebel I started out making jewlery (And still do) as well as embellishing the denim jackets. Also, we have a monthly newsletter featuring real,local women showcasing products and style. You can sign up for it by either calling the store or emailing me directly.
We love that you not only support local artisans, but you are one! What are a few of the clothing and Jewerly brands you carry?
Sonia McDowell: Clothing wise; Bryn Walker, Stella, Carakasi, Cut Loose, Colour Me Cotton, Grizas…Jewelery; local pieces from myself and others. As well we carry Soma Mo pieces (From Edmonton), she was recently appointed to arts counsel of Alberta.
We love that you stand behind supporting women in business! What’s your favourite part about 4th Street?
Sonia McDowell: The energy, it’s such a nice high energy place.
Your one guilty 4th Street pleasure?
Sonia McDowell: It would have to be the Vegan coconut doughnuts at Phil and Sebastiens!
And of course we are going to feature a beautiful piece of jewelry from your shop, that you MADE!!
Sonia McDowell: Yes, I am huge fan of working with gemstones, you will see that in this piece.
Want to get to know Nikola a bit better? Follow them online on Facebook.
Photography by Olivia George.