CLE+ Fashion Boutiques
The majority of Americans probably know Valerie Mayen from her stint on Project Runway. However, Cleveland has a special connection to this famous designer. Valerie graduated from the Cleveland Institute of Art with a degree in graphic design and illustration, and has since opened a Cleveland-based shop called Yellowcake. She decided to name her store Yellowcake because that dessert is one of the most underrated, classic sweets. And, those are the adjectives Mayen wants her clothing to evoke – sweet and classic.
Mayen also is working to start a Cleveland sewing co-op called Buzz & Growl, which gives designers, seamstresses and fashion students a space to work and expand their careers. Besides giving them this valuable workspace, the designers also will have resources (workshops/classes) and equipment (sewing machines and mannequins) at their disposal.
But Mayen isn’t the only one getting in on the boutique action in Cleveland Plus. Check out these other fashion boutiques in the area:
This cozy boutique is brimming with modern, urban attire. Shoppers will find unique clothing and accessories here, including pieces from their Baby Banyan collection (specializing in inimitable baby toys and outfits), the Cleveland Chic collection and Figwood Silver jewelry. But that’s not all. Banyan Tree has a plethora of chic dresses, tops and home décor from which to choose. It’s practically impossible to leave here empty-handed.
Heads will turn out on the town wearing a dress from Evie Lou, known for comfort and style. Run by Kim Crow, the former Plain Dealer style editor, this fashion boutique offers cozy-chic, contemporary styles for all sizes with the belief that women shouldn’t have to sacrifice comfort for style.
Pinky’s Daily Planner
Opened in 1997, Pinky’s Daily Planner brings a quirky edge to traditional, classic pieces. Owned by Stephanie Fralick, who is also the principal designer, this shop is “the modern clothes-closet for spirited girls.” Typical clientele are women ranging from their mid 20s to early 40s. The shop also carries Asian imports and a variety of vintage and indie finds.
Powter Puff Boutique
Each piece of vintage-style clothing and accessories is hand selected and beautifully unique. Tremont’s Powter Puff Boutique embraces women of all sizes with size options and styles that fit many body types. Shoppers will find that owner Brooke Nieves loves to lend a helping hand when it comes to finding that perfect outfit.
Virescent Design, Ltd.
Pittsburgh native Alison Saville turns old junk into beautiful jewelry, so her friend Stephanie Fralick (owner of Pinky’s Daily Planner) suggested she open a store/studio in Tremont to showcase her talent. Here, customers can buy Alison’s hand-crafted funky necklaces and pendants, made from old clock innards, broken glass, gears and even old tableware. Her designs make customers think twice before calling something junk.
Anne van H. Boutique – Little Italy
For the past 24 years, Anne van Hauwaert, a Belgian designer with her own line of jackets, has traveled the world looking for unique international clothing to sell in Cleveland. At her boutique in Little Italy she strives to bring Parisian and other European fashion to shoppers. Her taste is minimalistic and simple, yet extremely elegant. Shoppers also can find exclusive art from Brussels.
Blush Boutique – Coventry
Laurie Warshawsky and Gina Dudik are the co-owners of Blush Boutique in Coventry, selling hand-painted shoes, original jewelry and an assortment of women’s wear made by small, independent designers. Visitors will find a range of items, from the more hippie-chic bamboo knits and vintage fabrics to the ultimate girlie, vibrant dresses and sterling silver jewelry. As an added perk, although this boutique sells one-of-a-kind items, everything is reasonably priced.
Faith Lee’s Boutique – Cleveland Heights
Whether you’re looking for casual wear or formal wear, Faith Lee’s Boutique offers a wide assortment of ladies clothing, accessories and jewelry.
Larchmere Boulevard – Shaker Heights
Larchmere is Cleveland’s largest art and antiques shopping district. Visitors will find plenty of fun little fashion boutiques, such as Frog’s Legs, Inc. (an array of imported women’s clothing and accessories), Gentleman’s Quarters (specializing in Men’s European fashions) and The Dancing Sheep (featuring one-of-a-kind and limited edition clothing).
Revive Store – Cedar-Lee and Legacy Village
Enjoy an eclectic mix at this independent boutique, which can be found in two east side locations not too far from one another. They sell fair trade, eco-friendly products for both men and women of all ages, offering items such as sustainable clothing, accessories, houseware, skin care products, chocolate, coffee and tea.
Xen Gift Gallery – Little Italy
This studio and gallery in Little Italy features handcrafted jewelry made by Anic Ksenija, using stunning, high quality materials from all over the world. The artist’s vision is called “Art in Motion,” which is based on the belief that the wearer of the jewelry becomes part of the art itself by adding her own unique beauty to the piece. Anic even makes custom-made jewelry.
Divine Ideas – Ohio City
Divine Ideas, founded in 1985 by owner Daphne R. Ward, specializes in professional, custom clothing, alterations and restorations. Daphne beautifully creates custom-designed gowns (for events such as weddings, proms or just a special evening), as well as custom-designed men’s accessories.
Lion and Blue – Lakewood
As you walk into this store, you are greeted with the smells of jasmine and sandalwood. Lion and Blue has something for all ages with their Fair Trade adult and children’s clothing, handmade custom jewelry and Birkenstock footwear and repairs. Everything about this boutique breathes earthy and comfortable, yet stylish. The collection of wonderful incense and candles makes for great gifts.
The Mission Boutique – Lakewood
The Mission Boutique is the definition of a goth-esque boutique. With items ranging from hip hair clips, corsets, petticoats, belt buckles and trendy wallets, to exotic dance wear, this shop is for the edgy customer who wants to wear something that’s unique. Think red, black and pink materials complete with silver studs and zippers.
Room Service Cleveland – Ohio City
Room Service is a great gift store-boutique with everything from home accessories, stationary, art, beauty products, jewelry and even the edgy Defend Cleveland T-shirt line. Owner Danielle DeBoe created an eclectic shop where Clevelanders and visitors can indulge on all their unique and artsy desires.
Sassy’s – Old Avon Village
Sassy’s is the ultimate women’s accessory boutique. With items such as delicate sterling silver jewelry, fashion cocktail jewelry, spunky eyewear and Christine Alexander clothing, Sassy’s is unconventional to say the least. They also carry Onesole shoes and Timmy Woods of Beverly Hills purses, with funky designs such as the Eiffel Tower and an old rotary telephone. This shop will leave you asking just one question: Are you sassy enough?
We’re sure that’s not all. If we’re missing a one-of-a-kind boutique in Cleveland Plus, let us know below.
– AI and EH