Fashion lover aims for ‘addictive’ experience
Guardian Business Reporter
Published: Aug 02, 2013
Charmaine Kelly has always been a lover of all things fashion, a true fashionista at heart. With that passion for fashion, she knew that opening up a clothing store would be inevitable.
But she had no idea that Classy Loft Boutique would become a household name for shoppers.
Since opening her first location on Robinson Road and Market Street in 2007, the business has shown tremendous growth, despite some setbacks, Kelly revealed in this week’s edition of Da Plunge.
With a staff complement of seven, Classy Loft Boutique now has its biggest location on Robinson Road, offering lots more inventories from accessories to clothing for women.
“We opened our first location in 2007 with a small store on Robinson Road and Market Street, selling mainly basic wear for women,” said Kelly.
“As the business grew, we wanted to expand our offerings so we opened up a storefront on Village Road. The Village Road location was opened for approximately three years. While the consumers loved the concept of the store being on that side of the island, with no competition, the road works took a toll on us so we had to give up that location.”
She added: “We found a larger location on Robinson Road in the old Heastie lumber yard building. It’s a much bigger storefront. Our inventory has grown tremendously, along with our customer base. We have been at this location for the past six weeks.
“I have always had a love for fashion. When I was younger, I did a lot modeling both locally and abroad. The fashion industry has always fascinated me, so I decide to open up my own store. The store was really inspired by what I used to do.”
Classy Loft offers accessories, from hats to fascinators, scarfs, jeans, shirts, and dresses available in small to plus sizes.
Despite the success of the store so far and the fact that many consider it to be a household name, Kelly said she hopes that Classy Boutique would become a department store and create the perfect atmosphere for other shopping addicts and fashion lovers like her.
“In the next three to five years, I am hoping to brand my businesses. I would like to see a storefront in the Carmichael Road area,” Kelly revealed.
“But it can’t just be a regular shop space, I want a store that when you come in where the atmosphere is addictive to shopping. I want my customers to have a breathtaking experience from the moment they enter the store.
“I want to get to a point where I could be considered a department store.”
Located in the old Heastie lumber yard building on Robinson Road, Classy Loft Boutique is opened Monday to Saturday from 10:00am-6:00pm.
Caribe 2016 Cleveland