Edina’s Brad and Heather Fox of Fox Homes and HGTV’s Stay or Sell are expanding their brand to include a retail space at 44th and France that once housed Linhoff Photo. This new 1,000-square-foot storefront is called Foxwell and will offer a variety of home goods and accessories, including décor from featured makers that Brad and Heather have had on their TV show.
Retail wasn’t always part of the couple’s gameplan although Heather has long dreamed of owning a retail shop of this type. This particular project came together when the Fox Homes team began to bust at the seams of their current office space out in Minnetonka. Initially, they were on the hunt for additional office space. But then Heather asked Brad, “What if?”
What if they found a space that could house their agents but also include some retail storefront? And after much conversation, Heather says Brad had an “aha” moment when he jumped on board with the idea. The clincher may have been that the shop is an add-on to their existing business model. This concept alleviates some pressure of a typical storefront where retail sales are the main source of income.
The search for the right space was long, nearly a year in the planning. The building has a total of 4,000 square feet with an immovable brick wall dividing the space down the middle. So, 2,000 square feet will house Fox Homes agents with office space, meeting rooms, etc. The front 1,000 square feet will house the Foxwell retail space and will feature some furniture but mostly pillows, throw blankets, bedding and other home décor items. The couple’s goal is to have 20 percent of their shop’s retail items be locally sourced.
The remaining space will be a design studio where shoppers can see things like on-trend tile and wallpaper selections. “It will be really open,” Heather says, “so people can come in and shop and also get a little taste of our design studio.” A team of six designers are planned to work out of the space—along with a retail shop manager—and they’ll happily give tours to show interested shoppers those on-trend design elements.
Heather says it’s been fun to curate what will be the selection of retail items, adding that she has “a newfound appreciation for anyone who’s been in retail because it is hard. It is a lot of work and a lot of hours and so much thinking.” They’re also trying to make sure the things they’re buying are ethically sourced. “It will be a lot of things that we love and we know other people will love too,” Heather says. “A lot of things that you saw on the HGTV show that I’ve thrifted and found, I’m kind of taking that approach to it.” That means there will be some vintage or one-of-a-kind items.
But mostly, Heather says there will be items that will bring your style up to the next level.
The hope is to provide assistance to people who want help selecting particular items. For example, if someone needs a centerpiece for a gathering table or wants to style a specific space, Heather encourages shoppers to bring a photo of their area or bookcase, etc. so they can help select the right items and how to display them.
Foxwell is definitely Heather’s baby. “I’m the dreamer,” she says. “I carry a glittery notebook and Brad with his spreadsheets makes sure it all makes sense.” Brad is on board with this idea because it seems like a natural extension of what they do already. Their kids are also excited. “There will be a kids’ section as well,” Heather says. “They love science and STEM toys. I want them to test them out and write little reviews.” She wants to involve the entire Foxwell staff by inviting them to regularly select their favorite items and say why on display signage inside the shop. Find your own favorites when Foxwell opens later this month.