11 Boundary is a high-end fashion boutique offering an eclectic mix of women’s clothing, shoes and accessories by top UK and international designer brands. The store was launched earlier this year by Debra Winstanley, who after years of experience in the fashion retail industry realised there was a gap in the market for specialist boutiques; a gap which she was only too happy to fill.
“I feel that the high street is getting quite boring; everyone offers the same and so there’s such saturation,” explains Debra. “I feel that niche boutiques with a personal choice and a personal service is key. I’ve realised that not everyone wants mass produced garments, instead they want individual items and a good customer service.”
But at 11 Boundary there is a deeper purpose to their first-rate service other than just to generate sales; it’s about building relationships with customers and providing them with genuine assistance: “We can spend two hours in here with just one customer. We get a lot of customers that need help and advice… In here they get that!”
Pieces by Twenty8Twelve, American Vintage, Costume Nationale, L.A.M.B and Malene Birger are just a small selection of what’s offered at the East-end store. Many of these are well-established and popular labels, and some are even the creation of famous faces including Sienna Miller and Gwen Stefani. But what about new emerging designers? “You need your established brands,” reveals Winstanley. “It’s good to have a mix of pieces by new and emerging designers, but although you want to support them, it can be difficult and risky sometimes with new designers as you don’t always know if they are going to deliver or if their production is going to be right.”
Debra gave me an insight into what she looks for in a brand when buying: “The most important thing is to provide the customer with value for money. What we at 11 Boundary put a lot of energy into is finding brands that give good quality, as well as nicely designed garments.” A favourite of hers currently are Danish Brands including Malene Birger, DAY and a new arrival for 11 Boundary this season, Ganni: “They are absolutely amazing…the value of them all is just so good.”
Located in the trendy Shoreditch area of East London at number 11 Boundary Street (hence the name), Debra’s shop sits amongst a hub of style and luxury, with both the newly opened menswear concept store, Hostem and high end fashion boutique, Start, just minutes away from 11 Boundary’s doors.
The interior of the store is just as chic as the spot it is situated in, with plush white fittings and a pair of glamorous beaded chandeliers hanging from the ceiling. Debra searches through the racks and shows me some of her favourite items for Autumn 2010: “This one has already been very popular,” she says whilst holding up a grey knitted poncho by DAY. “We also had a beautiful Twenty8Twelve suede and leather mix jacket which has already sold out!”
11 Boundary now has an online presence in the form of an accompanying fashion blog, releasing news of latest stock and trends, and with an e-commerce addition to their website, www.11boundary.com, arriving in mid September.