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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    This 4th Ave. boutique has clothes, art, accessories, and… spray tans?

    Courtesy+of+Zoe+Boutique

    Courtesy of Zoe Boutique

    Lissa Marinaro was led by a “happy accident” to own ZOË Boutique in the year 2000. She has worked in the store since 1998 and took over when the original owner decided to head back east to be with family.

    Since then, she has added elements into the shop to make it her own. Not only does the shop now carry unique and trendy clothing, but Marinaro also added an art element to the store. The wall behind the register showcases paintings from local artists which are available for purchase. She said her heart truly lies with art, as she is an artist herself.

    “I actually went to school for art so that is where my heart is,” Marinaro said. “So we actually always have art from local [artists] on display and for sale like paintings, sometimes sculptures and photography.”

    The boutique’s local art isn’t the only distinctive element the store offers.

    Marinaro partnered with Shannon Gaines from Epic Tan and created a pop-up spray tan shop on Wednesdays and Thursdays in the boutique itself. Gaines is a long time shopper at ZOË, and she said she felt partnering up would benefit both of them.

    “I thought it would be the perfect partnership,” Gaines said. “It’s a win-win situation. … We have girls that go in that love to shop and … girls that go in want a spray tan. It’s a great partnership but it’s also able to offer customers a little bit more.”

    Maria Liatti, who has been working at the boutique for a little over six months, said she enjoys the multifaceted elements the shop offers. She said the art brings a “local vibe” that other retail stores may not have, and the spray tans really help out customers who need to bronze up for special events.

    “If you’re shopping for a certain thing like going out on the weekend or like a wedding or an event, a lot of people do get tans for that,” she said. “It’s convenient for them.”

    ZOË’s clothing and accessory selection really brings the boutique’s different elements together. Marinaro said they have a variety of clothes; she stocks trendy pieces, as well some unique to ZOË. She said they also sell “classic pieces, too, that you’re going to be able to wear season after season,” including bodycon dresses, work blouses and locally sourced jewelry.

    The boutique’s variety of clothing stood out most to longtime-shopper Gaines. She said that the welcoming vibe keeps her going back for more.

    “They have something for every occasion,” Gaines said. She said even casual wear choices can be easily dressed up for an event.

    Liatti said new merchandise comes in from every week to every other week, so shoppers won’t ever see the same clothes twice. Gaines said a typical experience at the boutique includes entering the store and feeling right at home. Marinaro and Liatti said they go out of their way to make the customers feel comfortable and make their shopping experience an exciting one.

    “Mostly, I just want people to enjoy themselves and feel comfortable and relaxed when in the store,” Marinaro said. “Sometimes [shopping] can be painful, so we try to make it fun.”

    Liatti said she feels the vibe is very personable; she said she loves to get to know customers so she can thoroughly assist them with finding an outfit.

    “I like to talk to the girls who come in and see if they’re shopping for a certain event or for a gift,” she said. “It gives me an idea of what they might like.”

    Honesty is the best policy when it comes to helping shoppers find the perfect outfit. Marinaro said she believes that making the sale is not more important than a customer’s satisfaction upon leaving the shop. Many women relate to buying a piece of clothing, but not really being in love with it when they try it on at home.

    Marinaro said she makes sure that her clients are just as satisfied with the outfit both when they try it on at the store and when they are back at home.

    “I think we are really honest with our customers,” Marinaro said. “We’re not going to sell them something just to make a sale. We really want them to leave looking great and [feeling] good about what they’re wearing. I want people to feel good when they leave and be happy with their purchase.”

    Check out ZOË Boutique at 735 N. Fourth Ave. or online at zoeboutique.net.


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