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Behind the Scenes with Vivian Rose Boutique {And Why Clothing Sizes Don’t Matter}

We are so excited to spend some time with Sharry, the owner of Vivian Rose Boutique.  We talk Fall Fashion, pursuing your dreams, and why the size on the tag doesn’t matter…

1. You’re the owner of Vivian Rose Boutique, you opened late this summer in the Old Depot building on Riverfront Drive in Mankato, but you’ve actually been around since February of 2016.  Tell us about VRB’s background: 

We actually started as an online boutique. It was my husband’s idea to go that route first. We were able to create a small fan base and do pop-up shops all over the Greater Mankato area. All of that knowledge helped me to grow and save for the time we were ready to have a brick and mortar location. I just didn’t think it would happen so soon! 

2. You’ve been a fashion lover for a long time, do you remember how your love affair with clothes began?

When I was a child, I used to save the big JCPenny catalogs and my mom’s magazines. I would then cut out the clothes and make my own paper dolls and outfits using the cut-outs. I think our house was littered with paper scraps for years. 

This buffalo check shirt is PERFECT for the Holiday season. It’s so soft and cozy but fitted enough that you don’t feel sloppy. The off the shoulder look gives it a little something special.

3. Your tagline is ‘Effortlessly Elegant’, I would say that very accurately describes your personal style.  What is your advice to someone who is trying to identify their own style?

I would start by asking what they feel best wearing. What kind of colors and cuts are your favorite? Once you have identified those, you can start shopping for pieces that fit with that uniform. For instance, when I don’t know what to wear, I usually go with ankle-length skinnies, flats, and a chiffon blouse. Maybe if it’s cold I throw on a cardigan or jacket over that combo. 

4. What has it been like to make the transition from full time employee to full time business owner?

Terrifying and amazing. I feel so proud of what I have created. But, this is still new to me. It’s a huge learning curve. 

5. Being a boutique owners sounds like such a glamorous job… what is the best part? 

I love it when a customer walks out of the dressing room with a huge smile because they just found the perfect outfit. You can just tell when someone feels confident and happy. I realize that these are just clothes, but clothes have the power to change the way we see ourselves. You deserve to feel good about yourself every day. 

6. On the flip side, we know no job is all sunshine and roses ALL the time. What has surprised you the most about owning a store?

As a business owner, there is no job I don’t do. It’s all me all of the time. The amount of physical labor is astounding. I am on my feet all day and then I do a lot of heavy lifting of boxes of inventory. It can take a toll on your body! 

These vintage bleached flannels are a must have. They are each unique with a special MN outline on the back. Add a cozy scarf and sneakers!

7.  Where do you see your store in 5 years?

Oh, this is hard….!  I see us having multiple locations offering more brands and sizes. Wherever we are, I just want to create a fun and vibrant atmosphere where women feel comfortable trying new looks in a judgement free zone. Does that make sense? It makes sense in my head. Also, I see us collaborating with other businesses and doing work in the community. 

We love this buffalo check vest over skinny jeans and a cozy thermal shirt. Throw on a beanie and some booties and you’re ready for a day out with the kids!

8. It’s almost November!  What are the Winter Season Must Have’s?

I am really into luxe fabrics right now like velvet, satin, shearling, and faux fur. I think they make any piece feel a bit more special. Plaids (especially buffalo) are always a fall/winter classic. Also, give me all the vests. I am just really into vests right now. You can never have too many, right? Right? 
 

 

9.  In one of your recent blog posts I think you called it the ‘elephant on the blog’, we’ve been friends for over 10 years.  How did you know we were going to be friends?

It was the first day we met, and at lunch you pulled out a Glamour magazine and bag of chips out of your teeny-tiny designer purse. I just knew that anyone armed with these essentials had to be my friend. You had no choice. 

10.  Our readers are busy moms.  What are some wardrobe staples that would be good starters for someone looking to develop their personal style?

Look for neutral pieces. When you have a closet full of neutrals, you can easily pull outfits together. Throw in a pop of color here and there, and you have constant options for mixing-up your closet. Also, simple dresses in breathable fabrics are comfortable, versatile, and timeless. Nothing is easier or more put-together looking than a dress. 

This dress is SO COMFORTABLE. It’s made out of BAMBOO and its stretchy in all the right ways, breathable and stylish. Booties and a hat elevate it for a date night but you could do sneakers and your go to ‘mom bag’ for every day!

11.  If you could collaborate on a clothing collection with any celebrity who would you choose?

Since Kate Middleton is super busy, I am guessing that she probably won’t be down for a collab, but a girl can dream. I also love Mandy Moore’s and Emma Watson’s personal style. 

12.  We love the positive, encouraging messages you have around your store.  What would be your greatest wish for someone shopping in your store?  {How do you want them to feel when they leave or wear their clothes}

I want women to feel that they got an amazing piece or outfit that they can’t wait to wear. Along that same vein, I want women to not stress about sizes  – wherever they shop. Sizes mean very little in the fashion world. A size large in one brand is a size large in another. Don’t get hung up what a tag says. Don’t be afraid of owing an article of clothing that is bigger than what you are used to buying. It’s just a tag, it can’t tell anyone, and we already know that the sizing isn’t standard. I have seen many women walk away from something they love because they didn’t want to size up. These tags have no power here!
 
You can find all these looks and more at Vivian Rose Boutique in the Train Depot Building on Riverfront Drive, Mankato. To stay updated on new arrivals and promotions follow VRB on Facebook.  Or you can shop online here.
This post is writing as a collaboration with our partners at Vivian Rose Boutique

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