Kal Rieman Ombre Belted Vest available for purchase online from Carriage House.
In a sea of chain clothing retailers, sometimes it seems our options for women’s clothing are limited to mass-produced selections. However, there still remain many excellent small boutiques that are meticulously curated by their passionate owners—you just have to know where to look. We tapped our editors across the country to recommend their top picks for local women’s shops. Whether you’re on a quest for on-trend or classic pieces, a single handbag or a complete wardrobe revamp, this collection of independently-owned boutiques are destined to be your new go-to shops.
SHOP: Carriage House
LOCATION: Huntsville, Alabama
WHAT THEY STOCK: This boutique showcases a modern twist on classic style.
WHAT OUR EDITOR SAYS: “Carriage House has been a Huntsville area staple for over 50 years,” shares Dawn Pumpelly, editor of The Scout Guide Huntsville. “The current owners, Kate Cole and Nicole Shelton, bring a sense of style and fashion that is representative of the fashion capitals of the world. A shopping excursion to Carriage House is a personal styling session as the stylists get to know you, your personal style, and your wardrobe, and they help you to create looks that are unique and fashion forward.”
MUST-HAVE ITEM: Kal Rieman Ombre Belted Vest, shown above.
SHOP: Kittie Kyle
LOCATION: Memphis, Tennessee
WHAT THEY STOCK: Kittie Kyle specializes in stylish and chic women’s clothing, from resort and casual/loungewear to formal attire and on-trend clothing and accessories.
WHAT OUR EDITOR SAYS: “I love Kittie Kyle because you will find things you can’t find anywhere else. Whether it’s a fun jumpsuit, a hat, or a bag, you can only get it at Kittie Kyle,” says Stephanie Wharton Stephens, editor of The Scout Guide Memphis & Oxford. “The owners do a magnificent job in carrying unique and trendy outfits.”
MUST-HAVE ITEM: Farm Rio Sweater, shown above.
LOCATION: San Antonio, Texas
WHAT THEY STOCK: Meadow blends contemporary classic and casual chic clothing, creating every woman’s dream closet. The boutique is well-curated, modern, and sophisticated, combining the old with the new.
WHAT OUR EDITOR SAYS: “We recommend this boutique because this women-owned and operated boutique stands out amidst the masses with the beauty and grace built into every designer, detail, and interior throughout the boutique,” says Francie Mannix, editor of The Scout Guide San Antonio. “Susanna Frankland has brought true style to San Antonio for over 10 years and the second you walk in her store, she makes you feel at home.”
MUST-HAVE ITEM: Rayne Bow Metallic Clutch, shown above.
LOCATION: Chapel Hill, North Carolina
WHAT THEY STOCK: Curator and buyer for Julian’s womenswear, Meagan Julian meticulously puts together flawless curations of timeless pieces each season. Many of their designers are exclusive to Julian’s, made in Italy and Spain, and have a timeless femininity.
WHAT OUR EDITOR SAYS: “When you think Julian’s, you think fine men’s clothing, custom suits, the iconic Alexander Julian fashion label, but lo and behold, there is a feminine counterpart to all that sartorial heft,” says Hopie Avery, editor of The Scout Guide Raleigh, Durham & Chapel Hill. “The women’s department at Julian’s is a curated mix of timeless fashion using the finest materials. They even do custom clothing for women.”
MUST-HAVE ITEM: Gypsy Silk Velvet Trench, shown above.
SHOP: You Are Here
LOCATION: Fort Worth, Texas
WHAT THEY STOCK: This welcoming boutique where they treat you like family carriers classic yet on-trend lines.
WHAT OUR EDITOR SAYS: “Not only have You Are Here’s founders, Joanna Bennett and Anne Walker Miller, curated the most beautiful selection of clothes and accessories, they’ve created a truly incredible shopping experience that both locals and out-of-towners rave about,” shares Leigh Brown, editor of The Scout Guide Fort Worth. “While you can shop their gorgeous styles online, You Are Here is worth the in-person visit just for the warm, personalized, and friendly atmosphere—and maybe a glass of rosé.”
MUST-HAVE ITEM: Brass and Enamel Pendant, shown above.
SHOP: Trish Boutique
LOCATION: Virginia Beach, Virginia
WHAT THEY STOCK: Trish is an upscale contemporary boutique for the sophisticated and classy woman.
WHAT OUR EDITOR SAYS: “Trish Boutique is the premier women’s clothing store of Virginia Beach,” shared Mary Kaufman, editor of The Scout Guide Tidewater. “Owner Tricia’s trained eye brings high-end brands to the women of Tidewater with her hand-picked collection.”
MUST-HAVE ITEM: Alexis Kayden Pant, shown above.
SHOP: Traveling Chic Boutique
LOCATION: Richmond, Virginia
WHAT THEY STOCK: Traveling Chic Boutique offers designer fashion at prices that everyone can feel good about with rotating merchandise so there’s always something new to discover.
WHAT OUR EDITOR SAYS: “This Carytown Boutique is our favorite for reasonably priced fashion and special pieces from favorite brands like Misa, not to mention great jewelry, candles, and beauty products,” says Cheney Edmunds, editor of The Scout Guide Richmond.
MUST-HAVE ITEM: Huey Booties, shown above.
LOCATION: New Orleans, Louisiana
WHAT THEY STOCK: Peony is a boutique for women who appreciate a unique, one-of-a kind find with a large influence of European brands.
WHAT OUR EDITOR SAYS: “The beauty found within this store reminds you about all of the reasons why you enjoy shopping in person,” explains Taylor Morgan, editor of The Scout Guide New Orleans. “Art installations, flowers, beautiful clothes, and people elevate this experience. The word I use to describe this store most frequently is whimsical: it’s where you would want to end your day with a glass of champagne and a dressing room full of clothes.”
MUST-HAVE ITEM: Susanne Bommer Ensemble with Kimono Belt, shown above.