Creative Forces

A beloved East Bay boutique is filled to the brim with mindful gifts


If you’ve been living in the East Bay for a while, you’ve probably heard of Grasmere, a unique boutique that sells mindfully handcrafted goods. Originally located in Barrington, owners Beth and Peter Gresch moved the store to the seaside town of Bristol in 2016. The original Grasmere opened back in 1995 when Beth, a former visual merchandising designer, knew the corporate world wasn’t for her and decided to go into small business with her husband Peter.

The store is known for their preserved floral arrangements, wreaths, greenery, faux succulents, vintage lamps, and pottery. Through the years, the shop’s offerings have expanded to include jewelry, sweaters, vegan leather goods, hats, and scarves. There are also ceramics, incense, and candles. “In our times of digital everything, we want our store to continue to focus on people, and so we chose our items by who creates them,” says Beth. “We want the store and the individual objects we offer to tell a story of people creating for people.”

During the holiday season, Beth and Peter decorate the shop with moss garland, wreaths dotted with pine cones, sea shells or flowers, preserved centerpieces, glass, felt and seashell ornaments, seasonal scents, wood incense burners from Germany, and preserved boxwoods and topiaries dressed with beautiful ribbon. “We re-envision each holiday season according to a specific visual concept, “ says Beth. “We use specialty greens, like juniper and arborvitae, for our wreaths, and import special wreath decor from Germany to match the design theme of the season.”

Finding the perfect gift is easy at the shop and the Gresches are helpful at guiding you through some of their independent designers and local artists. “I love keeping everything individual and personal, forming relationships with our customers and the artists we work with in creating the overall experience,” says Beth.

6 Franklin Street
Bristol, RI