Lee & Birch was just voted Best Women’s Clothing store in Revue’s Best of the West, as well as another local publication. Two major wins means you’ve got to give the people what they want: More Lee & Birch. Founding owner/president Nikki Gillette and co-owner Kristin Nipke are doing just that, adding another location to their already bustling businesses.
“We came up with a goal to bring Lee & Birch across West Michigan — not really thinking it would become reality,” Gillette said. “However, we are in a great position now to expand as we have amazing customers who have helped build an awesome business and following.”
Kalamazoo is the next landing spot, and everything feels right.
“Kalamazoo has been growing at a rapid pace. The demographics are similar to what we look for and there is a void in the boutique marketplace that we fill perfectly,” Gillette said. The new store will be located next to businesses with similar clientele: Pink Lemonade and the Cheese Lady. Plus, they’ll be located directly across the street from the farmers market.
Big wins and big moves are the theme here, and the new location will have a bigger footprint than the other three stores. With that extra space comes a plan for more events and fashion shows, both a hit among clients.
Get your Instagrams ready too, as the Rockford store manager and artist Paige Rochefort will be painting a mural on the Kalamazoo building, making a great backdrop for photos. Despite some of the changes, all four locations will carry the same merchandise apart from a few pieces and accessory lines.
“We are known for the quality of our pieces and the lush feel of the fabrics,” Gillette said. “We touch pretty much every piece before we decide to carry it in the store, and this will not change with the expansion into a fourth store.”
Seeing (or feeling) is believing, so put Lee & Birch to the test at the grand opening celebration on Saturday, Sept. 28, featuring swag bags, giveaways, discounts, drinks and more.
In the Kalamazoo area? Head to the shop’s new location at 7047 W Q Ave. in Kalamazoo and greet the newbie in town.
Nikki’s Fall Notes:
• Faux fur is BIG.
• Animal prints run wild on sweaters, pants and shoes!
• The Sorel selection will be LIT (per usual).
• Colors to watch include earth tones, mustard yellow and blush pink.
• Coin necklaces are a must-have.