Sometimes all we need is the backing of our family to make our dreams come true. This certainly rings true for Mary Margaret Culpepper and her family at Dear Stella Boutique.
How did you get involved in this business? I have always had a love for beautiful clothes but I had not previously thought about opening a clothing boutique. I began toying with the idea of opening a boutique during my last semester of college. I researched the business for months before I felt comfortable pitching the idea to my parents. I will never forget the nerves and excitement of the day I first spoke to them about it. Not only were my parents 100% on board, but they were eager to help and full of creative ideas. Together as a family, we took a giant leap of faith and it has been the best decision we could have made.
How did you come up with the name for your boutique? Growing up, we always had an old family Bible that sat on our living room coffee table. On the inside of the Bible was a love letter from my great grandfather to the love of his life, Stella. I always thought about that and when it came time to choose a name for the store, I immediately thought about the beginning of the letter. “Dear Stella” is the love of my life as the beautiful Stella was to my great grandfather.
Describe what kind of clothes you carry and the woman that you are targeting.
When my family and I opened Dear Stella Boutique, I wanted to cater to not just the young woman, but to the mothers and grandmothers as well. We wanted to set ourselves apart from the typical boutique stereotype and carry clothes that a woman well into her 50’s could wear and feel beautiful in. You will find a wide variety of clothes in the store from bright, colorful and trendy pieces to classic styles appropriate for many occasions.
What is it about Dear Stella Boutique that makes it stand out in Columbus? Besides being the newest boutique in town, our store is in a gorgeous historic building nestled in downtown Columbus. We are off the beaten path, but once you walk in our doors you are greeted with warm smiles and a vibrant atmosphere.
What spring trends are you most looking forward to? Color! I am obsessed with color and every year after winter I cannot wait to get into bright and colorful outfits for Spring. Florals are also going to be big this year which is really exciting because what girl doesn’t love flowers?
What brands do you carry at your store? We carry many different brands in the store and we are always searching for the best new designers. We go on buying trips frequently to find the hottest and newest trends to bring back to the store. There is always a new line making its way through our doors.
You spend most of your time in the store, but what do you enjoy doing in your free time? I love spending my free time with family and friends. They are my biggest supporters through this whole process of opening Dear Stella Boutique and I wouldn’t be where I am today without them.