Shop Review: Carlisle Creative Vibes

Sarah Manderbach '22, Opinion Editor

Carlisle Creative Vibes is a new shop to the small town of Carlisle, with unique offerings that are hard to find in a town in rural Pennsylvania.

The shop opened up on February 4, the same weekend as the Ice Fest. According to their website, Carlisle Creative Vibes is home to 30 different artists and creators, each with their own little spot within the store. The items range from holistic to retro, handmade, and even upcycled goods. 

I fell in love with the venue the moment I walked in the door. It’s relatively open, and filled to the brim with fun items and goods. If you are a practicing pagan or looking to expand upon your horizon, this shop has access to crystals, incense, and even tarot cards. The rest of the venues span back to side rooms, and even a snack bar for patrons to peruse. They have everything from candles and stickers and handmade decorative terrariums. It was almost overwhelming but it’s really nice to see a small business supporting other small businesses. 

The staff was also extremely kind and helpful. They were quick to greet me and my friends when we walked in and were there to help out whenever we had any questions. They even have a dog, which is always welcoming to fresh pets.

There are a few things, however, that I was very unsure about. First, it’s the unfortunate case of cultural appropriation. 

White sage, according to La Nirvana Organics, was originally used by Indigenous cultures in early America for ceremonial or ritualistic purposes to remove unwanted and persisting energies as well as smudging. Ever since being used in pagan rituals and smudging, there have been a lot of discussions about how harvesting white sage can destroy ecosystems while also not giving due to Indigenous cultures from which it spawned. 

Unfortunately, white sage is included in this store, as well as shrunken heads and human bones. I highly recommend looking up the associations with these objects and how exactly they can be identified as cultural appropriation.

Furthermore, a friend of mine was able to give me a small lesson about identifying if crystals are fake or not while inside the store. We did a small test on clear quartz while there, such as testing for bubbles or magnification properties. I’m not entirely sure if all of the other crystals in the shop are legit, but I highly recommend again to do your research before partaking in the purchase of crystals and other spiritualistic goods. 

Despite these things, I do think that there is great potential for Carlisle Creative Vibes to grow and develop over their time here and I look forward to seeing where they grow next.