We have a winner! £500 to spend at The Women’s Society Boutique!
We have a winner! Caroline McElhatton, will you please step forward and claim your prize!
Victoria Rex is the owner of The Women’s Society Boutique in Hertford, a business she opened in 2006. Muddy Herts talks to her about the secret of her success –The Women’s Society Boutique won the Muddy Award this year for Best Women’s Store – and also about the challenges of running her business.
The High Street has changed beyond recognition since we opened in Hertford 12 years ago. There’s been a massive decrease in footfall and so many shops have closed. What’s interesting is that across the country everyone moans when shops close, whether it’s BHS or another branch of M&S, but in addition to the ongoing increase in rates, there is so much more competition now and of course the way we shop has changed drastically. Online has completely transformed the way people buy clothes.
Today it’s a challenge having a boutique in a town but our customers keep us going because they are so loyal and tell us that we are doing something different. I think what we are offering is over and above what you get in a department store. We remember our customers and what they bought last time they were here. I think it’s a bit like a restaurant where the barman remembers how you like your G&T.
Our customers come in for easy-to-wear clothes for day-to-day life but also to look for something to wear for holidays and special occasions. We have some very basic pieces such as t-shirts and we also have limited edition dresses.
Choosing and buying clothes can be emotional. People come in for advice. It can be someone who’s had children and their figure has changed. Or perhaps someone is going back to work and feeling apprehensive. We can help with all kinds of things. Fashion has a powerful impact and can give you a huge amount of confidence in different scenarios.
We’re open on Sundays. It’s free to park in Hertford on Sundays and there’s a completely different atmosphere in the shop. People are very relaxed and have the time to browse.
I like to be on trend but not too out there. And of course people see what I’m wearing thanks to Instagram and that can help. Social media has a big role to play when you have your own business.
Everyone loves our changing rooms! They are boudoir-esque and are quite glamorous but at the same time I think people feel really comfortable in them and relax as if they are in their bedroom at home.
It’s really important to come in and touch clothes. Quite often someone will call and say ‘Oh, I saw that green dress in the window, have you still got it?’ and we say, ‘It’s actually blue.’ You need to see clothes close up. That’s how we do have the edge over online shopping.
When you have your own business, you have to be very flexible. With fashion in particular, it’s constantly changing. When we first opened in 2006 I think we did a lot more formal wear. Today we have so many clothes for every day. Brands like YAYA are easy to wear and are really well priced.
I’m really keen to get the BID (Business Improvement District) going in Hertford. We’ve got lots of good independents and it would be great to get everyone working more closely together.
THIS GIVEAWAY HAS NOW CLOSED. CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR WINNER: Caroline McElhatton
AND HERE’S OUR GIVEAWAY!
Do you want to WIN £500 to treat yourself to a shopping experience at The Women’s Society Boutique? And a free consultation with their stylist? Of course you do!
- GO to the Muddy Herts Facebook page and LIKE the page before midnight on Fri 20 July. (If you like a page you are also following).
- LIKE the giveaway post pinned at the top and comment on why you like to shop local to win this great giveaway plus TAG a friend in your comment.
- The names will be put in the Muddy Herts straw hat and the winner will be drawn by Muddy Herts. The winner’s name will be posted on the Muddy Herts Facebook page on Sat 21 July.
Simple as that – Go, Follow, Like, Tag.
- Entrants must be 18 years and over.
- The chance to win the giveaway ends at midnight on Fri 20 July.
- You win £500 worth of vouchers to spend at The Women’s Society Boutique and a complimentary appointment with their stylist.
- No alternative prize will be offered and the prize cannot be exchanged for cash.
- This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed, or administered by or in association with, Facebook. Facebook can’t be held liable for anything related to this promotion.
The Women’s Society Boutique 2 St Andrew Street, Hertford, SG14 1JA