Yesterday as I was driving through Mechanicsville, I made a wrong turn onto what I later realized was Bell Creek Road. I was motoring along, looking for a place to turn around when I pulled in to Hanover Square North. I knew this was shopping destiny because I happened upon a new Marshalls and a new Rue 21.
The Marshalls at 7230 Bell Creek Road is the chain’s only “Shoe Megashop” in the Richmond area. If you’ve ever been to one of these shoe goldmines, you know this means a greatly expanded shoe department where the shoes are displayed by style instead of by size. There are also generally more high-end brands ripe for the picking. I spied two different, very tempting styles of Betsey Johnson platforms before I bolted from the department in hopes of saving myself from overspending. The store also has a classier layout with more heavy-duty, upscale shelving than some of the other stores around town.
Also located in the strip mall was Rue 21 , which just opened last Thursday. This is the Warrendale, Pa.-based chain’s first location in Richmond. My heart skipped a beat when I saw the sign because I fondly remembered the store from my discount-shopping days in my hometown of Pittsburgh. To my delight, the inventory was as I remembered it. The company follows and analyzes national fashion trends and then designs their own less expensive versions of what they deem to be in style. While the store is geared to a younger clientele, there are great finds to be had for all ages, especially in the accessories department. I saw lots of fun, chunky necklaces (priced at $7 and under) and wide belts ($10 and under) in every color of the rainbow. There was also a fun selection of handbags. I went home with a black and white dress that was accented with green flowers and a matching pair of green and natural-toned espadrilles, and I spent less than $40.