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  • Coterie Boutique had a soft opening followed by a grand opening ribbon cutting and celebration on Friday, June 2.
    Larry Sells
    Coterie Boutique had a soft opening followed by a grand opening ribbon cutting and celebration on Friday, June 2.

Coterie Boutique’s New Location Is Open For Business

Gracie Fairfax
Gracie Fairfax's picture
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June 14, 2017

After a few years in its Mountain Road shop, Coterie Boutique has moved into a new custom-designed space in Magothy Gateway. The owner, Bess Clark, spent eight years in Los Angeles, where she worked as the executive director of a corporate law firm and grew a branch (www.eminutes.com) that focused solely on entrepreneurship and small business solutions. At the time, she also had an art studio in the fashion district that enabled her to build relationships with fashion designers and foster her passion for fashion.

In 2010, when she relocated to “‘Dena-Park” to raise her family, Clark realized the area lacked boutique shopping experiences, and she began planning to create a boutique of her own. She opened the doors to Coterie Boutique in 2014, although many in the area suggested she open a consignment store instead. Despite the initial pushback, Clark believed the area needed the type of store she wanted to create. Since then, she has grown her business each year and has been able to develop a loyal client base that her new location allows her to expand upon.

Clark sources her clothes directly from designers in Los Angeles — the hub of the U.S. fashion industry — as well as other shows and marketplaces throughout the country.

“I just bring it from the source, and you’re getting the good stuff before anybody else and at a reasonable price,” Clark said.

When picking out items for her store, she considers community members, their lifestyles and what will fit every figure — all while remembering the importance of value for money.

The new location, designed with her customers in mind, will allow her to carry more of the independent labels she has grown to love and provide them increased exposure.

“I love independent labels … they’re U.S.-based small businesses whether they manufacture here or not. They’re designers, they’re agents, they’re representatives,” Clark said. “There’s a whole network of things that goes into making clothes and designing them. My business and the ability that I have to foster hundreds and thousands of other small businesses — it’s an awesome opportunity.”

In addition to new clothing lines and a brighter atmosphere, customers can expect the same level of service provided by Clark and her employees at the Mountain Road store.

Each customer receives the help of a personal stylist who will offer their honest opinion each time they walk through the doors of Coterie Boutique.

“We’re not here to sell. We’re here to make sure you look good,” Clark said. “That’s our No. 1 mission, and everyone on our staff knows that.” This approach awarded Coterie “Best Overall Customer Service” from readers who voted in the Pasadena Voice’s Best of Pasadena survey in 2017.

As Clark and her seven team members settle into the new space a few doors down from Harris Teeter, they’re preparing for the increased exposure, walk-through traffic and an expanding client base.

“I look forward to reaching more women with the ‘less is more’ approach to styling and offering them more versatility in their wardrobe and, of course, to find their personal style. There’s no size-fits-all philosophy here,” she said.

Coterie Boutique is open Monday through Wednesday and Saturday from 10:00am to 6:00pm, Thursday and Friday from 10:00am to 8:00pm and Sunday from 11:00am to 4:00pm.

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