Shop AaRaa in Hoboken This Holiday Season

by Lauren Bull

On more than one occasion, while being rung up by one of aaRaa’s lovely sales associates, I’ve been asked, “Is this a gift for someone?” And I’ve lowered my eyes and confessed, “No, just for me.” Cause sometimes you just gotta, and many of my Hoboken “just gottas” have been in aaRaa.

The earrings I wore to my best friend’s wedding? Those are from aaRaa. The neon yellow statement necklace that I’ve worn with a t-shirt and a dress? Also aaRaa. That box of assorted earrings and bracelets that I reach for weekly? Again, aaRaa. But I’ve also gifted plenty of aaRaa finds to my mom, my aunt, and three of my close friends, whose respective styles couldn’t be more different from one another. That’s a reflection of the aaRaa aesthetic, which includes chandelier earrings for the glamour girl, chunky cuffs for the bohemian superhero, and ornate sculptures for the person who prefers to look at something bold rather than wear it.
_DSC0331Owner and shop curator Neeta King first opened the store in 2001 with a focus on home furnishings. “I started with the intention of bringing things from India — quality stuff,” she says. The store has since changed locations (now nestled between Grand and Adams on 6th) and has evolved into a gift and jewelry store that also sells small furniture and other home decor. Walking down 6th street has become a whiplash hazard for me, as aaRaa’s window displays make my neck swivel and my brain think big thoughts like, “Maybe I can buy five necklaces and a foot stool on a Tuesday.”

The store also has that oh-so-perfect and oh-so-difficult-to-achieve balance between affordability and quality. That’s probably because Neeta does most of the shopping herself — two major buying trips to India each year, as well as international trade shows — which gives the place a handpicked feel you can’t fake. The inventory sends a clear message to the customer: fashion is for the moment and timeless. Maybe you won’t put on the bright green drop earrings every morning, but they should still hold up for that day down the road when they’re the only accessory that will do. “Why should it be anything people lose sleep over?” Neeta asks. “It should be fun.”

With holiday shopping in full swing, “fun” is a word you rarely hear. It gets muffled by COUPONS, ONE DAY SALE, DON’T MISS OUT, etc. Stop by aaRaa to shift back to fun, calm and lower case letters. You can even pick up some soothing incense while you’re there.They have that, too.

aaRaa, 408 6th St., Hoboken, 201-386-0101

About the Author/s

Lauren is a neurotic writer living in Jersey City. She could watch Jacques Pépin slice an onion on an endless loop. She edits The Digest and The Digest Online. @ltbullington

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Neeta November 29, 2013 - 1:02 pm

Dear Lauren, I thoroughly enjoyed your witty & refreshing review on Aaraa 🙂
Thank you!

Jennifer January 2, 2014 - 10:26 pm

Love this article…and love Aaraa!!


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