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Business Spotlight

Total Elegance Boutique

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06/01/2008 - Okay, so I'm walking into Total Elegance Boutique on a mission to interview owner/operator Jackie Faught. Next thing I know, I spot a tastefully arranged display of beautiful, elegant dresses and I'm stopping to browse. Then, I see some gorgeous jewelry and handbags and I'm walking over to look at them. I'm vaguely aware that my mind is glossing over. My original mission is foggy. It's like walking into my kitchen and finding a chocolate bar on the counter. Resistance is futile.

Ladies, that's just how entrancing and enticing Total Elegance Boutique is.

Jackie is a lovely, gracious, and hospitable woman. Her two part-time employees, Linda Burd and Mary Ann Tremel, are equally hospitable. Later, I meet Jackie's husband and co-owner Kirk and he's friendly, too. Kirk can't stay long because he's volunteering to do some construction demolition over at Hospice. Doing this kind of work is not unusual for Kirk because, besides serving as the shop's business manager, he repairs and maintains the grand, 100-year-old Victorian that houses the shop.

Jackie tells me that she and Kirk recently discovered another of Kirk's talents. One that lay hidden until they bought their shop 18 months ago. Jackie and Kirk go to market together and Kirk has the uncanny ability to know which items will sell in their boutique. "He's an incredible business partner," Jackie tells me.

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Jackie and Kirk's vision for their shop is for it to be recognized as the specialty women's boutique clothier for Casper. Their merchandise is "special, pretty, different." Jackie adds, "I try not to populate the store with too many of the same dress, skirt, pantsuit, etc." That way, a woman knows what she's wearing is rare. Not everyone else in town will be wearing it.

A while back, someone visiting Casper from Europe came into the shop, looked around and exclaimed, "This is like a European boutique!" The unique, feminine clothing. The quality. The elegant way the merchandise is displayed.

Total Elegance also offers boutique service. For instance, if a woman can't come in during normal business hours because of her work schedule, she only needs to call Jackie and the store will be kept open a while longer for her. In addition, sometimes the boutique offers "trunk shows" where a vendor brings in an array of upcoming selections and customers gather among refreshments and prizes and watch a "preview of coming attractions." Their boutique service also includes free gift-wrapping, a gift-registry, special orders, and special attention for every lady and for every person shopping for a special lady.

Total Elegance Boutique is open Monday through Saturday 10 am to 5 pm. They are located at 1035 E. 2nd which is a block west of the hospital. There's a parking lot behind the store which is accessible via the alley between McKinley and Jackson Streets. Their phone is 473-1844.

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