Since opening H Kyle Boutique in September 2015, owner Tia Whittington has been working hard to keep her store relevant to the average woman with the latest styles and fits. The flagship store is located in Prairieville, but the boutique recently had a seasonal pop-up in the Mall of Louisiana to better reach customers during the Christmas season. We talked with Tia about what keeps her store thriving.
1. What is a typical day like for you and your team? A typical day starts with getting our daily to-do’s in order and accomplished. Running a boutique is all about staying on top of everything, from barcoding smaller pieces of jewelry to making sure displays flow in a way that makes sense for our customers.
2. What is your professional background? How did you get into the retail field? I went to school to be an educator, and I found myself thinking about entrepreneurship, after a consistent desire to do more. Teaching is great and one of the noblest professions, but I’ve always felt a pull to pursue a career in fashion. I have a passion for style, and the birth of this boutique came about after some years of mental preparation, prayer and good timing.
3. What are the first things customers see when they walk through the doors? The first thing customers see when they walk through the doors is a smiling face. They also see an eye-catching metallic gold accent wall adorned with a chic Moroccan pattern. It always sparks conversation, and it’s a warm greeting and nice setup for our clothing to be showcased.
4. What sets your store apart? Our store is set apart by our “three P’s”—that’s our picks, our personnel and our purpose. I’ve found a knack for curating quality pieces to fill our four walls, which makes our clothing and accessories collection unique. Our personnel is friendly and trained to be very helpful. Lastly, our purpose is to give everyone who walks through our doors an excellent, one-of-a-kind shopping experience.
5. What is one thing you think customers should know about your store that they may not be aware of? We want more of our customers to be aware of our amazing online shopping experience. Shophkyle.com has been recently updated to give our online clientele something fresh and unexpected from a local retailer.
6. How do you keep your store’s inventory fresh and up to date? We keep our store’s inventory and selection up to date by keeping a close eye on what’s next. Before you know it, “what’s next” quickly becomes “what’s now,” so staying ahead of the curve allows us to be right on time.
7. Can you share a hint about what trends will be popular next season? We are still seeing off-the-shoulder everything! Ruffles, stripes, the color blush, and brights are definitely popular for the spring.
8. What was your reason for opening the store? When did it open, and how has it grown or changed since then? My store opened out of a desire for change and a yearning for something different. The store was opened in memory of my mother, Martha, and in honor of my daughter, Harper Kyle. My mother had the best style. We always talked about the possibility of us opening a women’s clothing boutique together, but she passed away before we had the opportunity to do so. I keep a picture of her inside the store, so I never forget the reason behind what I do! The store opened in September 2015. The basis of our store has stayed the same. We try to find classic pieces that can be worn for years to come. But these pieces are still on par with current fashion trends and affordable for the average woman!
9. What are a few must-have items this season? This season, our must-have items include elastic-waist flare jeans that are a favorite of all of our customers, monogrammed rain jackets and leopard boyfriend cardigans.
10. What are some of your best-selling products? Our best-sellers are definitely our Z Supply pocket tees and moto jeggings.