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Rust and Roses opens on Main Street
August 24, 2018

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Antique and vintage lovers will notice a new shop on Main Street open for business called Rust and Roses, providing another personal touch to Dysart from upcycled items, clothes and home decor.

Rust and Roses is owned and operated by Heather Mennenga, a longtime Dysart resident who's operated her business out on the road for several years. Recently, her oldest daughter moved away for college, requiring Mennenga to rethink her business model and working full-time out of Cedar Falls.

"I had this business on the side, traveling through a trailer," Mennenga said. "That all wouldn't work, but then the oppurtunity opened here and I just thought why not? I'm closer for my youngest son."

Rust and Roses features upcycled vintage funiture, clothing, accessories, jewelry, bath and body items. The furniture is arranged as Mennenga would picture it in a living space or her own home. She also sells "mantique", items of interest to men that are out of scrap piles and upcycled just for masculine taste.

"One of the most popular trends in the past few years has been the farmhouse style," Mennenga said. "I love the style, but I also love Bohemian for being completely different. Mixing vintage and new together is fun and you get some interesting designs out of it."

But upcycling items or even antiques didn't tickle Mennenga's fancy at a young age. Growing up, her family would take weekend trips toward the Mississippi and go to flea markets, an activity she despised.

"I absolutely hated those flea markets and I could not wait to be done with that part of the day," Mennenga said. "Nothing about them interested me at all. Then when I was 18, I ran across a ceramic duck planter and there was something about the colors that intrigued me. It was a start of a collection and all of sudden I got interested in the story of pieces I saw. I found my creativity because I could see something and then see what I could with it."

Years later, Mennenga is selling similar items in a building she grew up coming to as a laundromat, later a flower shop and other shops.

"I'm thankful I'm able to be here in town for my family and it's amazing to contribute to this wonderful Main Street I've grown up by my whole life," Mennenga said. "I've been a vintage markets around the Midwest and if you mention Dysart, people know there's a great Main Street to shop on. I'm excited to be part of this. I want to promote not only my own shop, but other businesses down this street."

Mennenga hope to make Rust and Roses a longterm shop and reduce her time on the road. She also would like to feature vendors for select clothing that fits with her business.

"I would like to have a shop that people can walk into and have a wide variety of items for themselves or for their home and see how it's placed," Mennenga said. "I want to be a good addition to our Main Street here in Dysart."

Rust and Roses is open Wednesday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and closed on Sundays and Mondays. Patrons can find Rust and Roses on Facebook for more information.

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