All natural — New organic, vegan boutique Tiny Rebellion opens in downtown Marshalltown

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T-R PHOTO BY ROBERT MAHARRY — Tiny Rebellion Co-Owner Christina Oetker helps happy customer Shonna Garth during the soft opening of her new shop on South Center Street in downtown Marshalltown Saturday morning. Oetker also works as a special education teacher at Marshalltown High School.
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By Robert Maharry, Times-Republican

Christina Oetker and Alicia Hernandez Odom were tired of traveling to other communities to find the organic and vegan products they were looking for, so they took action. The result is Tiny Rebellion, their new boutique at 19 S. Center St. Ste. 2 in the same building as BDH Technology across the street from the courthouse, which officially opened for business on Saturday morning. 

“I’ve always wanted to (start a business), but I just never knew what I wanted to do. I wanted to bring something unique to our community,” Oetker said. “It just never came to me and then I was like ‘You know what? We don’t have a store like this.’”

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Oetker, who has lived in Marshalltown for 22 years and works as a special education teacher at MHS, said she’s been thinking more about what she puts into her body as she gets older, so knowing what’s in all of the products she uses has become much more important to her. She’s also had more time on her hands with both of her sons out of the house, and the shop felt like the perfect way to transition into the next phase in her life. 

She was excited to partner up with Hernandez Odom, a lifelong Marshalltown resident and former daycare provider, to source their made in the U.S.A. inventory — including everything from essential oils and candles to herbal teas, dog treats and a limited selection of clothes — from other mom and pop shops both in Iowa and around the country. Oetker loves many of the other boutiques already located in the downtown area, but she was sure to note that what she’s offering is different, with less of a focus on clothes and home decor. 

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T-R PHOTO BY ROBERT MAHARRY — Tiny Rebellion Co-Owners Christina Oetker, left, and Alicia Hernandez Odom, right, pose for a photo on their first day of business Saturday. The shop is located at 19 S. Center St. Ste. 2 across the street from the Marshall County Courthouse.

An enthusiastic group of shoppers visited Tiny Rebellion on Saturday, and they were happy to support a local business run by local people with a desire to give something back to their community. It’s a small space by design, and the owners are hopeful that anyone who walks through the door will always feel calm with a one-on-one customer experience and a homey, welcoming space. 

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“I want them to feel like this is a place they want to be. We’ll be adding products all the time as we find them,” Oetker said. “And I don’t want to go big… I don’t like huge places. I think bigger places take away from the personal conversations you can have with people.” 

Tiny Rebellion will be open Wednesdays and Thursdays from 4 to 7 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The business can be found on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=61555848140352 or reached by phone at (641) 351-0234. 

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Contact Robert Maharry at (641) 753-6611 ext. 255 or [email protected].

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