Shop Spring: Boutiques in State College

Spring in State College is almost upon us! The snow has begun to thaw, and the time to break out those old flip flops is coming quickly. Without a spring break for Penn State students this semester, the warm weather will come in with a warm welcome. Stores are ready to help you shed your layers of coats and sweaters in exchange for a t-shirt and shorts, so here are some places to shop 2021’s spring trends:


At Ethereal on College Ave., Miranda Sheetz selects brands with products that are ethical, pleasing to the eye and mind, and bring something for every kind of customer. As Sheetz is a meditation teacher herself, her products are intention-based and emphasize mindfulness and meditation.

Ethereal’s products include crystals, meditation guides, and oils that help customers guide their mindfulness, as well as American-made ethically-sourced clothing. She is hoping to bring back her pre-Covid meditation classes in the store when in-person events become safe for all again. 

Photo courtesy of Miranda Sheetz

“Green has been a very popular color, especially the matcha color,” Sheetz says. 

Honorable spring 2021 trends mentioned include the classic tie-dye pieces, pastels and comfortable athleisure wear (perfect for Zoom classes at home).

People’s Nation

People’s Nation on College Ave. brings variety in clothing, sourcing pieces from an array of brands including Free People. There are always new clothes to browse and different finds on sale.

Here you can find fashionable masks, accessories, jewelry, dresses, going-out tops, denim, soft joggers and even hair dye. Notable spring colors at People’s Nation include greens, pastel purples, blues, and pinks, as well as nudes and neutrals. Baggy jeans like mom jeans, dad jeans, carpenter pants and flare jeans are becoming 2021 fashion staples.

Tag @VALLEYmag on a picture of your new spring fit with #FitCheckFriday for a chance to be featured on VALLEY’s Instagram.


Connections opened at its original location in 1996, and the store has watched State College grow and change throughout the years. Today, Connections is located on Allen St. Theresa Ritzman, owner at Connections and a Penn State grad herself, selects clothing based on trends and colors that are in style.

“I try to stay up-to-date on what people are wearing with good colors at a good price point,” Ritzman says. 

The beginning of the pandemic hit small businesses hard, and the newfound emphasis among consumers on shopping local has allowed customers to branch out and visit stores like Connections.

“People have realized that they want something new, so they come and look around,” Ritzman explains.

Posted by @connectionsclothingsc on Instagram

If you are looking for something new, Connections is bringing in swimsuits for the first time this spring. Honorable trend mentions to dad jeans with longer in-seams and a more baggy fit, seamless tops to wear on their own or under a sweater for a layered look, as well as brown and nude tones. 

“If there weren’t stores like this around, the downtown would be so different,” Ritzman says.


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