Community Spotlight: Ariel Nilsen

We're so grateful to be able to call Ballard our home! Our thriving neighborhood is home to some of the best small businesses, as well as the best people in Seattle. The community that lives, visits, and works here is what makes our little home by the water flourish and every month we shine the spotlight on those very folks that make Ballard so special.

This month, we're featuring Ariel and her fashion forward frenchie, Coco. You might have seen these two out and about delighting the Ballard Ave shoppers on their daily walks as they pass by in their coordinating outfits. Ariel has been a beloved presence in our community for years, so it is an honor to be able to give her a big Horseshoe shoutout! 

Horseshoe: How long have you lived in Ballard/Seattle?
Ariel: I was born and raised in Seattle (that makes me a unicorn, right?!), but as a proud Norwegian spent much of my childhood in Ballard. I moved back to Ballard at the beginning of the pandemic (June 2020) and Coco joined me two years ago!

H: What's your favorite part about living in this community?
A: I love that Ballard truly feels like a "community"! Whenever we're out and about we're always either running into someone we know or meeting someone new! My daily dog walks through the neighborhood truly invigorate me... from seeing all of our neighbors out enjoying the neighborhood to popping in for treats at all of Coco's favorite shops, Ballard is "home".

H: When did you first discover Horseshoe?
A: This is going to age me, but I've been shopping there since it was the previous boutique.... That said, while I've always loved the merchandise it didn't always have the same energy it has today. When I moved back to Ballard and began to truly explore and rediscover our neighborhood businesses, Horseshoe truly stood out to me as this vibrant, fun, inclusive shop where not only did I feel welcome, but felt represented! Every time we walk in we are so warmly greeted whether we're shopping or browsing or just popping in for a social visit (i.e. dog treats). Horseshoe embodies community and is such a precious part of ours!!!!

H: What is something you'd like the world to know about you?
A: This is a hard one.... One of my favorite things about my life is how much joy Coco provides and it's such an honor to be able to share her with the world!

I love beauty and joy and light and sharing love. I think our society is always quick to speak up about frustrations and negativity but doesn't take the time to spread positivity.... So anytime I see something or someone beautiful or unique I love taking the moment to share that feedback. It is amazing to see how much a compliment, a kind word (or even a smile!) can light up someone's whole day!

H: Give us one piece of style advice!
A: Pink goes with everything!
So does wine!
Being "extra" is never too much.
Color coordinating with your dog is perfectly normal.
Laughter and joy are my favorite accessories.

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