The Purple Door settling into new location
Local witch Selena Drake moved her metaphysical shop, The Purple Door, into the Allure Studio building on Broadway in February, maintaining the only storefront for Wiccan and pagan practitioners in the Magic City to purchase the wares and resources for their craft.
Drake first began exploring and practicing Wicca and chaos magic more than 20 years ago, describing herself as a “green witch” due to her love of tending her herb garden. Before moving back to Minot, Drake lived in Fargo and spent time with the Lake Agassiz Pagan Community, which she credits with helping her realize what could be possible even in a state like North Dakota, helping her refine what her own store would eventually be.
An established author, Drake first realized an opening in the market after moving back to her hometown of Minot and began seeking venues to sell her books.
“I realized there’s no Wicca or metaphysical shops in my town, and we needed one. A lot of Wiccans and pagans do not like to shop for this stuff online. They like to actually be able to feel it, because everything has an energy around it,” Drake said. “You’d be surprised how many Wiccans and pagans are in the area.”
Drake had to make due with an online storefront that offered home delivery when she first got her business rolling, but she knew an actual physical store was the only way she could properly serve the nascent community of magic users in Minot. The appeal of the physical storefront isn’t limited solely to the mystical for her customers, as stores like The Purple Door provide some assurance and guarantee of authenticity in the products and items up for sale.
“With Etsy or Amazon, you can’t verify the authenticity of the crystals. I can tell you that my turquoise comes directly from South Africa. I got stones from Pakistan, Iraq, Egypt. I even have lava from Kilauea,” said Drake, referencing the volcanic eruption in Hawaii earlier this year.
Since moving to her new digs, Drake has expanded her inventory, with an even wider array of crystals, statuary, spell books, singing bowls, incense and smudging kits, herbs and an assortment of other oddities relevant to the pagan arts. Visitors to The Purple Door will find not only the tools of the trade but can also avail themselves of Drake’s tarot card and palm reading services to help them navigate the turbulence of day-to-day life.
“It scares people how accurate the cards are, especially when you start to piece it together,” Drake said. “Technically, your ‘higher self’ already knows all of this, but the cards reveal it for your ‘present self,’ so it’s like finding out a great secret that just makes sense.”
Anyone curious can stop by the store or visit the local library.
“I would recommend hitting up the library for books on Wicca and paganism. Mostly Buckland’s ‘Complete Book of Witchcraft.’ He covers everything,” Drake said.