Mainstream Boutique: Empowering women through fashion

Mainstream Boutique started in a basement 27 years ago and has grown to 80 stores nationwide, including at Lake Lorraine, with a mission to empower, strengthen and celebrate women.

“We build a relationship with our clients and we work with you and know you so we can help you find and look your best in your daily activities,” said store manager Liz Carrell.

The women’s boutique recently celebrated its one-year anniversary at Lake Lorraine. Each store works to offer the same shopping experience and there are core brands offered by Mainstream Boutique, however individual shops can also order their own unique items as well. It’s not unusual to have more than one boutique in a community, Carrell said.

Mac & Me is an exclusive line offered by Mainstream. Carrell said many people come in specifically for the denim, which is comfortable and allows women to dress up or dress down their look.

“We work hard to maintain the mission — our focus is not the transaction,” Carrell said. “We want to serve women through fashion.”

The store can dress women from head to toe, with plenty of accessories, too. Mainstream Boutique is one of two women’s boutiques at Lake Lorraine, and both are located on Marion Road on the west side of the development. Love Marlow, which opened in November, caters to women sizes 12-28. There is some size overlap at Mainstream Boutique, which carries up to size 16 in pants and sizes small through extra large in tops, with some brands offering size extra small up to 3X.

“It’s great to have different options here at Lake Lorraine — there’s something for everybody,” Carrell said. “We like that Lake Lorraine is an area rooted in a local feel. We saw the potential and we wanted to be a part of it. Within this development, I can shop for home décor, shows, kids stuff and grab a bite to eat. I think people are excited for the new things happening here and the buzz around the lake. We have familiar national chains and lots of unique businesses, too.”

Stylists are also important, and the Mainstream Boutique staff tries to really get to know their clientele so they can help steer shoppers toward items that make them feel good and look good, Carrell said.

“When people feel good, they do good — it has a ripple effect,” Carrell said. “This is a safe place where people can come and feel comfortable and where they won’t be judged.”

The store’s current inventory features fall and winter looks, with scarves and lots of layering options from sweaters to jean jackets as well as bright colors and items pulled from menswear. Looking ahead, February will bring a major shopping trip at a national market, where Carrell will order new looks for the spring.

Keeping up with what’s on trend and in-stock at Mainstream is easy with social media — the staff at Mainstream is very active in sharing what’s new in the store and upcoming sales. Shoppers can order off Instagram and Facebook and the store will invoice via PayPal; orders are available for pick-up at the store or can be shipped.

“We want to be where people are and social media helps. People have their phones with them and they can get notifications in their feed — it’s convenient, quick and easy,” Carrell said.

For more information, find Mainstream Boutique—Lake Lorraine on Facebook (link to Facebook page).