Local Shop Offers Small Town Charm & Timeless Fashions
Writer / Jane VanOsdol
Photographer / Glenda White
Many business owners start their ventures with a complete business plan in place and all the boxes ticked on their business launch to-do list. That was not quite the scenario for Bash Boutique owner Amber Noone. In November 2014, Noone heard about an available space in a renovated historic building in downtown Wabash, Indiana.
At that time, Wabash was in the beginning phases of a renaissance, spearheaded by Lisa Gilman of Redemption Development. Noone looked at the 650-square-foot space on a downtown alley and promptly fell in love. Much to the surprise of others who thought this a poor business decision, Noone, “on a whim,” went for it. Bash Boutique, short for Wabash, launched its grand opening to a standing-room-only crowd and closed the day out with phenomenal sales. Eighteen months later, business was booming, and Noone moved to a prime location on Market Street, more than doubling her space.
The business was such a success that in 2016 Noone opened a second location in Westfield. Westfield was in the midst of its own small business growth and was an area she was familiar with. Noone found and renovated a house on Walnut Street, off the beaten trail, and the popular shop became known as “the hidden gem boutique of Westfield.”
Growth continued and, in September 2017, Noone launched her third shop, this time in Noblesville. The common denominator of all three locations is that each one is in an intimate community.
“For all of my stores, what I love is the small-town charm, the collaboration with other businesses, the events,” Noone says. “A lot of the businesses depend on each other.”
And indeed, this business model has been highly successful for her.
One more change was in store, and that was a change of location for Bash Boutique Westfield. In July 2018, feeling like she was losing customers to the hidden location, she snapped up storefront space that opened up on Main Street and moved the few blocks to her new, highly visible space.
Noone’s love of shopping small town stores influences her selection of goods for her own stores. As she would travel for her full-time job as a salesperson, she was always exploring boutiques in towns she passed through, noting their style and lines of clothing and gifts.
“I love to shop local and like to fill my store with things that speak to me and I’m passionate about,” she says.
Noone has cultivated an extensive line of women’s clothing, accessories, jewelry and gifts and describes the style as sophisticated, classic and timeless.
“I want my customers to have their things for a while,” she says. She looks for versatile pieces that can be dressed up or down.
Each store features the same brands and branding but different styles so that people can shop all three locations and find something unique in each one. Her branding focus is simple, sincere and sweet. Each store is similarly decorated in a subdued decor of grays, blacks and whites, which gives a peaceful ambiance.
“I want the clothing to take on the life of the store,” Noone says.
Here are a few featured top brands:
- Joseph Ribkoff
- Liverpool Jeans Company
- Comfy Lysse
- Brighton® Jewelry
- Ambre® Blends perfume
Noone believes the key to her success is due to the individualized attention each customer is offered.
“People will come in and say ‘I’m going to a concert or on a date or on a work trip. Outfit me,’” she says.
She loves to help build outfits and trains her employees in this skill as well. It’s a goal for “customers to leave loving what they buy.”
Private Shopping Parties
Bash Boutique also offers private shopping parties where the hostess and her friends get the whole store to themselves. The hostess receives a 20 percent discount on purchases and friends get 10 percent off. Contact each store for details or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
As for what’s new, customers can now purchase clothes online at BashBoutique.net. The Noblesville store also now carries men’s jeans.
Might Noone have plans for a fourth store? While she’s not sure yet, she does have her eye on a few small-town locations if the opportunity arises.
“I don’t want to grow too fast,” she says. “I want to make these three as good as they can be.”
Bash Boutique is located at 110 E. Main Street in Westfield. You can call the Westfield store at 317-867-1490. The Noblesville store is located at 884 Logan Street or you can give them a call at 317-674-8573. For more information, visit them online at bashboutique.net.