By MARG JACKSON
Elle Boutique and Home Décor is trendy, easily accessible, with a friendly staff and an eclectic mix of clothing, home décor and – just arrived – gifts for the holidays.
Owner Lauren Holmes said the shop, at 1900 McHenry Ave., Suite 205 in Escalon, has official hours of Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., but you can often find the doors open outside those hours as well.
“We always do really well with candles and clothes are our best sellers, we do a lot of clothing sales,” Holmes said.
A specialty during the holidays is decorated Christmas trees, with Holmes doing several different theme trees. In the past, they have included all pink decorations for breast cancer awareness to a black and blue-tinged fallen police officer’s tree.
Holmes also likes to decorate the shop for the holidays and is proud to offer a wide variety of gift giving items, from home décor to jewelry. Small trees in pots have also been customer favorites, especially for hostess gifts or office holiday party gift exchanges.
Admitting to having a wry sense of humor, Holmes said last year she also brought in tea towels with some funny sayings and partnered them with some wooden spoons that she burned designs into, offering them up as a unique gift item.
“The boutique business has been a little different this year, our slow months last year were the busiest this year,” Holmes explained. “And the trends were a little different.”
For Holmes, however, that is part of the fun and the challenge of being a small business owner – keeping tabs on the pulse of her clientele in order to provide the items they are looking for throughout the year.
“Last year we also did really well with ornaments,” she added of the holiday shopping season. “Again, I buy a lot of ornaments that have funny sayings on them.”
As far as the store’s clothing, Holmes said their T-shirt dresses and leggings seem to be the first off the shelves, and she is also bringing in cold-shouldered shirts for the fall/winter season.
She also said you don’t have to be super model skinny to shop at her boutique.
“We sell a lot of plus size clothes, I always like to let people know we carry that,” Holmes explained. “I am not a size 0, I will never be a size 0 and that’s one of the reasons I opened a boutique, I went to stores and could never find anything to fit me.”
The staff at Elle is always willing to help pick out that special gift for the holidays and it’s also is a great ‘go-to’ shop for spur of the moment purchases or finding a unique housewarming or ‘congratulations’ item.
Holmes welcomes everyone in for what is sure to be a satisfying shopping experience.
“I travel all the time,” Holmes said. “I go to different stores all over, I feel like ours is a little different, we just have a fun sense of humor.”