Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Lucie Stansbury Mixes the Unexpected

By Torie Temple

Lucie Stansbury, owner of Liv Boutique, has created a different type of shopping experience for customers.

Even though Lucie had been in the antiques business for 15 years owning The Century Shop Antiques, her passion for fashion compelled her to make a giant leap in the retail business. “I had this thought in my mind since I was a little girl,” she says. “I loved to shop and try on clothes, so I have always loved fashion. I really wanted to incorporate fashion into my retail business, so I decided to downsize the antique store and open Liv Boutique.

“Liv is a lifestyle boutique. However, there are still original art and antique pieces mixed with unique, whimsical things brought together. Things you wouldn’t expect to be together in one retail location.”

With an eclectic mix of merchandise and a range of price points, Lucie is hoping her boutique brings something new to Louisville. “There aren’t a lot of boutiques in Louisville because of the big department stores, so I did most of my research in Nashville,” she says. “Nashville has a great vibe, and Louisville is a similar place. We started working on this after Derby and opened in August of this year. We did all the work ourselves with help from friends and family. It was a lot of long hours, but it was enjoyable. I am often at the store until 11 at night, but I am loving it.”

Lucie has found that running a boutique is much different than owning an antique shop. She deals with more traffic coming in, smaller ticketed prices, and reordering merchandise that she wouldn’t do for the antique store. “For fashion, you are buying six months out for seasonal merchandise, so you must anticipate what is going to be popular in Louisville,” she says. “But at the same time, I don’t want to purchase things that are too popular so that I can offer unique items. This part has been interesting and fun. I love going to market. I love finding artisans and designers who are not in market.”

With the boutique full of standout merchandise, there is one thing Lucie will not offer. “I don’t want to make online shopping available,” she says. “Online shopping is taking over, and I know a lot of boutiques are headed in that direction, but I don’t want to go there. I want to offer an experience in the store — good service with effortless shopping.”

Lucie doesn’t plan on making Liv Boutique her only fashion store. “I would like to open another store in a warm climate and be there a few months out of the year. I am not a fan of the cold.”

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