Jill Shea and Laura Polanski are excited to launch a new boutique, called Leela & Lavender, here in Fargo, North Dakota. It will carry women’s apparel, accessories and unique gifts. Leela & Lavender will not only offer the latest fashion, they are determined to provide more than the ordinary retail experience.
The two have been working in the fashion industry throughout their careers and are very passionate about retail and the fashion industry. Leela & Lavender is pleased to serve you fashion with a purpose. Polanski states, “We really felt that retail was becoming status quo and needed to be reignited. We also know that fashion can be a force for good and we wanted a way to give back to our local community. Leela will give a portion of all profits to the local women’s charities.” I was fortunate enough to hear from Polanski all about their vision for Leela & Lavender.
Who would you say is your target market?
Laura Polanski: Leela believes fashion is about a taste level, not at an age level. Our target is a woman who is engaged in life. She is busy, lacks time to shop and desires customized service.
What are some of your goals for this boutique?
LP: Leela wants to provide a fun and customized shopping experience. Our goal is to have each woman leave with a better version of herself. Leela understands that life is busy and time is valuable. Leela is a “one stop style shop” for our customer.
What kind of merchandise and brands will your store offer?
LP: Leela will carry women’s apparel, accessories and unique gifts. Our merchandise will offer trend variety and allow our customer to experience “style adventure.” The merchandise will span looks of London street, New York confident and California casual — style for every facet of life. Some of the brands will include Free People movement, Hudson jeans, Blank NYC, Kendra Scott jewelry, Vince Camuto and Naughty Monkey shoes. We will also carry quite a bit of merchandise under our own Leela & Lavender label.
How will this boutique stand out from the others?
LP: We believe fashion can be a force for good, which is why Leela is giving back a portion of her proceeds to local women’s charities. Leela will provide personalized style sessions. The customer will fill out a card online with her personalized preferences including the size she wears. We will pull merchandise based on those preferences, and when she arrives in store her own dressing room will be ready with styles chosen just for her. Along with style sessions, Leela will provide subscription services called “Happiness in a Box,” special orders, alterations, trunk shows, personal appointments and style parties.
Leela’s style catalyst will be trained in fashion and trend and will provide above and beyond customer service that is lacking in the retail industry today. Leela will disrupt the one price model and will offer moderate to prestige. Leela will also disrupt the stereotypical figure. We will offer fit variety to embrace all customers.
Do you plan on opening chain stores in the future?
LP: Yes, if we see proof of concept with the first store, we will open additional stores. Our goal is to open one each year for the next five years.
The store will open in late October at the location of The Shoppes at BLU Water Creek complex 3265 45th St. S at the corner of 32nd Avenue South and 45th Street South. Be sure to check them out!