Boutique shopping at warehouse prices

June 8, 2011 8:30:50 PM PDT
A $240 purse for $185. A $68 Olive and Oak tunic dress for $48. And $115 white jeans for $78. Those are just a few of the deals on current-season designer pieces you can get at the newly-opened Boutique Wearhouse in Newtown Square.

Owner Robin Cohen spent 25 years in retail, and then became a closeout broker -- buying designer fashions for off-price stores like Loehmann's and T.J. Maxx.

She was inspired to open her own store because she missed dealing with customers one-on-one.

She says she wondered, "Why can't we do this in a boutique setting, high-end, off-price, same service, but not in a T.J. Maxx kind of setting?"

The clothes at the Boutique Wearhouse come from the designers Cohen dealt with in New York and Los Angeles when she was a broker. She buys what the boutiques don't.

"I just buy a little later, after the full-line boutiques have already made their purchases," she explains. "They're all first goods: no samples, no seconds, no irregulars. Current season. We'll just get them a couple of weeks later."

The clothes range from career-wear -- like a $135 dress for $70 -- to weekend wear -- like a $75 t-shirt for $55 and $205 jeans for $90. Plus, there are plenty of accessories.

Shoppers are free to browse the racks themselves, but Robin and her staff are also happy to help put outfits together.

Meg Greene of Gradyville, a frequent shopper, says, "Robin really works with you to help you know your style. She knows your style even before you know your style. And the clothes are unique and the prices are great."

The Boutique Wearhouse is open Wednesdays through Saturdays. Thursdays, they're open until 8:00 p.m. for "Champagne and Shopping" night. For more information, click here.