There’s a buzz of excitement in downtown Marietta, as a new business prepares to open its doors at 248 Front Street. Many of us have enjoyed watching the transition from vacant space to “teaser” signs to attractive window displays, and the transformation is nearly complete. Joining the downtown lineup of young and long-time businesses is a new clothing store, Sugar Maple Boutique. Although they are busily preparing for their April 6th Grand Opening, owners Nikki Logston and Michelle Willoughby were kind enough to meet with me.
While some people dream and plan for years before taking the plunge of business ownership, these childhood friends didn’t take nearly as long. Last year, after 17 years in the retail industry, Michelle felt she was ready to take the plunge and become an owner. When she shared her vision with Nikki, the two decided to become partners and Sugar Maple Boutique was born. The result is an attractive, well branded shop that is already generating interest and gaining a following.
Long time residents of the Mid-Ohio Valley, Nikki and Michelle knew they wanted to locate their business on Front Street. They listed some of the qualities that drew them to Front Street – charm, visibility, and attractive spaces. They have already enjoyed a warm welcome from the business community and told me they feel right at home. Even though the Grand Opening is April 6th (and First Friday), customers have already stopped in and walked out with purchases.
The beautiful interior is a bit industrial and a bit shabby chic with DIY touches that add their personal flair. Lovely shades of gray, attractive light fixtures and creative displays entice visitors to relax and browse. The clothing lines are trendy yet classic styles that will appeal to women in a wide range of ages, shapes and sizes. The pair explained that their stock will consist of limited runs, so they will always be introducing new items. That also means that if you see something you love, you’d better grab it because it may not be back!
In addition to the clothing, Sugar Maple Boutique carries an assortment of jewelry and accessories. Nikki and Michelle are particularly proud of their “Traces of Ashlie” jewelry, hand made and exclusive to the shop in this region. They explained that their goal is to offer great customer service and help their shoppers find styles that make them feel good about themselves.
When Nikki isn’t working her full time job, she’ll be tending shop alongside Michelle. They are already planning some special events including private parties that will offer hostess incentives. If, like me, you’ve eagerly followed the social media posts and sneak peeks, the wait is over! Join us in welcoming Sugar Maple Boutique to our neighborhood and wish them many years of success.