Kansas City, MO and online
Shop: Function Junction
Location: Kansas City, Mo
Typical Items: They're an independent retailer offering innovative kitchen items, housewares and home furnishings.
Average Price Range: $5-$100+
Function Junction has been a Kansas City staple since 1977. They're a home-goods store that specializes in kitchenware and cleaning supplies, plus a fabulous assortment of things to keep your spaces organized. Even if you're not in the market for something new, you will be by the time you leave their doors!
Mary Merola says Function Junction was originally founded to instill ‘kitchen confidence’ for everyone from the amateur cook to the professional chef. Since they're opening 32 years ago, they've become a Kansas City institution in the kitchen and housewares market. They have recently revamped their Crown Center location and it's now packed to the gills with brightly colored kitchen gadgets and serving ware along with products that are aimed at the more serious side of cooking.
Function Junction is one of those stores that you go in to check out the latest doo-dads and gizmos on a whim and end up leaving with a bag full of things you never know how you lived without. It's the type of store that inspires the domestic side in anyone and embraces the do-it-yourself attitude when it comes to cooking, dining, cleaning and organization.
The day we were there, the store was jam packed with shoppers (although we tried our best to keep them out of the photos above), food demonstrations were happening and friendly sales clerks were everywhere, to help you out with any question you might have. They even helped us track down a product we were looking for that they didn't carry at another store—that's dedication.
If you happen to be in the Kansas City area, chances are you'll visit the Crown Center area at some point and time, make sure to swing by and say hi. Go for the hard to find kitchenwares (we liked the dinosaur cookie cutters best!) and stay for their A+ customer service and willingness to demonstrate the use of any product in their store before you buy it!
• Function Junction
(Images: Sarah Rae Trover)