Originally published in The Weekly Packet, May 31, 2018
Moyo boutique offers ‘carefully curated’ gifts
Jill Clendenen offers a unique, eclectic array of gifts and goods at Moyo, now open at 58 Main Street.
by Anne Berleant
Moyo means “heart” in Swahili, as in the center of emotions, and the new Moyo boutique on Main Street in Blue Hill brings that sensibility in the gifts and goods on its shelves, tables and walls.
Moyo offers what owner Jill Clendenen describes as a “carefully curated” selection of goods, each with its own story, from small-batch artisans from Portland, Maine, to Portland, Oregon, and closer to home.
“I look for fun things I love,” Clendenen said.
Nearly all are made in the United States and many come from connections Clendenen has made in her travels in retail and as a shopper, and from friends and family.
One week after her opening day May 24, Clendenen was arranging small felted animals and felting kits from Brooksville’s Oliver Rabbit. Scents from candles and soaps suffused the air as ’70s funk music played softly in the background.
Hand-made blankets, pooch sweaters, photo-books, small-batch beauty and skincare products, jewelry, purses and other unique items have found their home on the shelves and tables in Moyo.
“These are things not anywhere else in the town. I think that will really make a difference,” she noted.
For some shoppers, the intentions behind many of the small companies whose products Moyo carries will also make a difference. Several donate part of their profits to projects on poverty, women’s health, girls’ education and climate change.
“One of the things I’ve really realized as I’ve curated [Moyo] is that it’s a very well-intentioned store,” Clendenen said. “In these days for brick-and-mortar stores, it’s important.”
Moyo is located at 58 Main Street, with a porch ready for sipping lemonade and, as the season heats up, live acoustic music, with performers such as Clendenen’s husband, Tim Seeley.
Moyo is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., with hours changing in July. You can reach Moyo at 374-5000.