Monthly Archives: November 2009

Merchandising Boutique Clothing

Boutiques are more popular than ever because of the unique and custom designed clothing that they sell. Boutique owners need to find interesting and unique ways to showcase their clothing to stay ahead of the competition. Promoting and merchandising are a little different for boutiques because of the cutting edge ways in which they need to go about it to work on their brand image.

First, consider the feel of your store. The atmosphere is set in many ways, but for boutiques, it’s all in the details. Your lighting alone should showcase certain areas of the store and set the tone and mood. Customers should feel a certain way as soon as they walk in. Using lighting to calm or excite is one way to start out. Many boutiques use drop down decorative spotlights and lamps to keep things highly illuminated without resorting to harsh overhead lights.

Think about what customers will see when they come in, as they walk around, and as they look through your clothing racks. They should initially see varied textures and displays at different heights. Use tables, garment racks, and interesting things to hang from, such as antique armoires or hat racks. You can even hang art or abstract items on hooks from the ceiling to accent different areas of the store.

Make sure that your displays are always kept orderly and neat. In a boutique, there are often a lot of unique items that don’t fit into categories. These can be showcased in a lot of different ways, just make sure that you don’t make any one area cluttered, or people won’t feel like sifting through. Many boutiques effectively maintain an orderly disorder and it adds to the charm of the boutique.

Details come in many forms. Think about what details you want to add from floor to ceiling. The floor may call for interesting rugs. Be careful not to put rugs in heavily trafficked areas where people might trip over the edges. Hopefully customers will be looking at the merchandise and not the floor! Use rugs in small areas where you have seating or larger items that sit on the floor so that they don’t become a liability.

Your garment racks themselves can be interesting. There are many on the market that are designed for boutiques. They have decorative details and designs that entertain as they display. You can also use other things, like dressers and tables to display so that it doesn’t end up looking like a regular retail store. Avoid a lot of circular or really long racks. It doesn’t do much for the eye and will end up being ignored for more interesting displays.

Have your tags and hangers custom designed. Many wooden hangers can be embossed with your logo, a saying, a picture or a brand. Wood hangers also add to the charm and sophistication of the boutique. Plastic hangers may be cheap, but they’ll say something about the quality of your clothes and are much more likely to damage your inventory. Wood hangers exude the sense of quality and strength. They also come in a lot of different styles, like shirt hangers, skirt hangers, and dress hangers. The specialty hanger sizes and styles are well suited to the custom clothing that you carry.

About the Author: Charlie Hafter is on the staff of Closet Hanger Factory, a leading online resource for wooden hangers. Get all of the wood hangers and closet accessories you could need at, which is recognized worldwide for their excellent quality hangers.

Closet Ideas for Shoes

Take one last look at your shoe mountain and get ready to organize it in a way that is really maintainable and easy to use. There are so many organizers on the market today that it is easy and inexpensive to install a system, but you can design your own. If you don’t want to spend a lot of money, there are still ways that you can get things moving in the right direction and create space.

Shoes are a big problem for most people. We have dress shoes, work-out shoes, winter shoes, summer sandals, hiking shoes, running shoes, and boots. It’s no wonder that the closet gets overrun with a mountain of dusty shoes. Keeping your shoes in a pile is not only a dust collecting heap of disorganization, it is damaging to your shoes and you can never find the two that you need. If you do, they’re probably smashed out of shape and scuffed from being buried in the mess.

Shoe storage is a must. You don’t need much room for shoe shelves or cubbies. A lot of people install a shoe rack on the back of the closet door to save space. Another option is to build small corner shelves up each side of the closet. Those front corners are rarely used and are perfect for creating shoe cubbies.

Another option is to install a low shelf all the way around the floor of the closet. You can double it up for double the space. If you need to, move the hanging bar and top shelf up a foot. You can still reach it, you make more room near the floor, and you take up some of that wasted space near the ceiling.

Shoe hanging systems are great too. You can put them on the back of your closet door or on an interior wall of the closet. Use padded hooks at the bottom to hang boots and other shoes that are too large or too tall to fit on the hangers.

Stuff boots and other leather shoes with newspaper or tissue paper to help them keep their shape through the seasons. Using cedar clothes hangers in your closet will keep it from smelling like feet. This clothes hanger absorbs moisture in the closet and deodorizes the air. You can put cedar accessories down in shoes that you know get sweaty, like hiking boots and running shoes. When shoes smell, it is because they are teaming with bacteria. Put them into a plastic bag and freeze them overnight. Just put them outside when it is below freezing outside, or straight into your kitchen freezer. The bacteria will be killed and the smell will be gone. Washing often just feeds the bacteria with the warmth and moisture that they need to survive.

When your shoes are nice and orderly, finish out the rest of the closet by updating your clothes hangers. Like I said, a cedar clothes hanger does double duty in your closet. Specialty hangers like shirt hangers, skirt hangers, and dress hangers keep your closet looking super organized and neat. It all starts with taking care of those shoes!

About the Author: Charlie Hafter is on the staff of Closet Hanger Factory, a leading online resource for clothes hangers. Get all of the closet and clothes hanger accessories you could need at, which is recognized worldwide for their excellent quality hangers.

How to Get Rid of Stains on Suede

Suede comes in so many grades and textures that finding the right cleaning product can be confusing. Some suede will easily lose their color and texture, actually becoming weak and damaged from the loss of their oils. Use this article as a guide only. Don’t use anything on your suede garments without first testing an inconspicuous area. Some leather cleaners can ruin suede or the stitching, so it’s best to use one that is made specifically for your type of leather.

Suede is perhaps the hardest leather to keep clean. The matte, porous texture has very little resistance to stains. Cleaning stains can be a bit tricky and you may want to take your suede garments to a professional if you have a serious stain. However, if you want to try it yourself, here’s what you can do.

For dry stains, try gently brushing them with a soft toothbrush. A baby toothbrush is best because it is softer. If a toothbrush doesn’t work, you can try erasing the stain with a pencil eraser. Remember to test a hidden area first so that you know if a soft toothbrush or pencil eraser will ruin the nap of the leather.

If the stain is wet, absorb as much as you can by pressing a dry towel or paper towel firmly against the surface. Don’t rub, only press. You may even stand on the spot to squeeze out the liquid with your weight. Wet stains should be taken to a professional. If it’s not worth the cost to you to take it to be cleaned, you can try to do it yourself with a towel that has been barely dampened with white vinegar. Test for colorfastness before you go for the stain. Depending on how the leather was treated, colors could run away from the spot.

Use a hair dryer set to cool to get the spot dry as quickly as possible. Don’t use heat or you could set the stain and harm the suede. Use a dry wash cloth or soft baby toothbrush to restore the nap of the suede as it dries. Don’t ever let a wet spot sit or it will leave a ring when it dries. It will also turn stiff and the leather will be weakened. Suede garments will often tear and crack along the seams if they get too wet.

Drying a suede coat or suit that has been drenched would take forever with a cool hair dryer. You can let them air dry if you do it properly. Suede garments will lose their shape if not dried correctly. Soak up as much water as possible by pressing with a dry cloth as described above. Hang suits on clothes hangers that are made specifically for each garment. Choosing the right clothes hanger can make all the difference. Shirts go on shirt hangers, skirts on skirt hangers, dresses on dress hangers, and coats on coat hangers. This will help to maintain the shape of the garment as it dries.

About the Author: Charlie Hafter is on the staff of Closet Hanger Factory, a leading online resource for clothes hangers. Get all of the closet and clothes hanger accessories you could need at, which is recognized worldwide for their excellent quality hangers.