Love boutique shopping? Check out Boutikey!

I’m a big fan of local boutique shopping. Actually, who am I kidding, I’m a big fan of shopping in general. But nothing beats the service you often get at a small business. The attention to detail, the more personalized service…there are many reasons people opt for their local boutique vs. a big department store.

Over the last year or so, I’ve begun to follow some of my favorite local/Boston boutiques on Instagram and Facebook. Often learning about special sales or getting the first glimpse into new items. I’ve loved keeping up with these businesses through social media. Recently, I noticed a post from Boutikey on Instagram which featured a cute outfit (lovely winter white faux fur vest and some accessories – see below).

There it is - the original post that caught my eye

There it is – the original post that caught my eye

Click to –> Shop Boutikey styles now!

I commented on the post and got an almost immediate reply – that they had a few vests in stock at their “pop up” boutique location in Fenway (Boston, MA). I won’t lie, I actually tried to drive to Fenway but got lost and never actually found the “pop up” boutique. Thankfully though, the woman who replied to me on Instagram also left a phone number. I called and let her know I would love to pick it up but might not make it over. She told me the vest would soon be available online through their online boutique Shopboutikey.com. This news peaked my interest…

another cute look from the Boutikey Insta account

another cute look from the Boutikey Insta account

It led to me doing some digging on Boutikey. As their site says: Boutikey is a company that aims to bring the boutique shopping experience online. The founder, Tiana asked herself: What if she could find a way to bring the boutique shopping experience online, and help consumers and store owners engage beyond the typical store hours? And there you have it- Boutikey was born.

Boutikey aggregates inventory from local boutiques and also sells items direct (through ShopBoutikey.com). Through ShopBoutikey.com, you can browse clothing and accessories from local boutiques – and even purchase from multiple boutiques at one time. Just add what you want to your shopping cart like any other ecommerce experience.

**Update**: there is a Boutikey app for the iPhone and coming soon for Droid. Through the Boutikey app you can:

  • Browse and discover new fashions/looks from your local boutiques (currently, just Boston boutiques)
  • Share looks across your social networks
  • Find a boutique in your area
  • Find out about offers & special events
  • Earn points/rewards for each dollar you spend
  • Through your profile you can track your favorite looks, favorite stores, and track your rewards

Yesterday, I stopped by Crush on Newbury Street and earned points by shopping…

Crush Boutique's feed from the Boutikey app

Crush Boutique’s feed from the Boutikey app

Click to –> Shop Boutikey styles now!

I earned 156 points yesterday for shopping. Once I've spent $500, I get 20% off my next purchase

I earned 156 points yesterday for shopping. Once I’ve spent $500, I get 20% off my next purchase

Currently, Boutikey is focused on the Boston area but there is interest in expanding. Looks like they’re expanding into CA and CT. And they encourage: If you have a favorite boutique you’d like to see online, email hello@boutikey.com with your name and your store suggestion.

Boston boutiques you can shop through Boutikey: Ku De Ta (Chestnut Hill, South Boston), Habit (South Boston), Pretty Reckless (South Boston), Heart & Sole (North End), Crush Boutique (Newbury St.) to name a few.

What really sparked me to finally write this post was – I had added a couple items to my cart on ShopBoutikey.com and entered my info – but I had decided I didn’t want to buy “right now.” Unlike big department stores, I didn’t get a generic “you forgot something” or “you left something in your cart” email. Instead, I got an email from a real person. An email written to me – mentioning the items left behind and some additional info on them. And, a 10% discount offer. The personalized service you are used to getting “in store” definitely came through in this email. I was pleasantly surprised.

So, why shop Boutikey? 

  • To support local small businesses (woo hoo!!!)
  • Browse and buy from many different boutiques from your desktop or phone through Shopboutikey.com. FREE ground ship (or $12.95 for 2 day). Shop boutique items 24/7 from anywhere
  • Download the *free* Boutikey app to find new boutiques near you, browse new styles, and earn rewards just for shopping

Couple other things

  • Follow Boutikey on Instagram for hot off the press new items
  • Sign up for their email/newsletter and get 10% off your 1st order
  • They also have a cool blog: boutikeystyle.com with outfit ideas galore
  • With “Small Business Saturday” around the corner – just another great reason to shop local on November 29th

Soooo check it out! Follow em’ on Instagram – at the very least you’ll get some funky wardrobe ideas.

Click to –> Shop Boutikey styles now!

The Nude Pump…gotta have it

Nude heels – they’re everywhere. Why do they rule? Because they match with everything, literally. Denim, black, multi-colors…and best of all, a nude pair of heels with a skirt or dress actually elongates the legs and gives a more slimming appearance! Don’t believe me, check this little story out: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2011/11/04/the-shoes-that-could-help-you-drop-a-dress-size_n_1076319.html

You can go to Saks and spend $600+ on a pair of Nude designer pumps or, you can walk into DSW and find 25+ different pairs at a multitude of more reasonable price points. But, with all the options, at so many different price levels – how can you find a good pair? Frankly, ‘a good pair’ of heels varies by girl. For me, I like pumps that aren’t over 4 1/2 inches. I love heels because they elongate the legs, help me stand taller and more confidently – but when they get too tall, I teeter around and can barely make the walk from my office to a nearby conference room at work without turning my ankle. Also, I don’t mind the front platform…but I don’t want something too high in the front for fear of looking like a disco dancer. In short, I’m picky, I have specific heel criteria.

After much searching…and even buying a pair of patent leather nude heels that I thought looked wonderful but later pinched and cramped my toes to the point that I walked almost a mile barefoot in NYC, I found THE pair for me. Fitting the following criteria:

  1. Heel under 4 1/2 inches but NOT a kitten heel
  2. Smaller front platform
  3. Comfortable – can be worn by a wider foot
  4. Nude patent leather (easier to clean)
  5. Under $100
  6. I’d also like them to be work and ‘going out’ appropriate – I need versatile shoes!

Result:

  • FOUND – during Bloomingdales Friends & Family sale – therefore, saving 20%! However, the heels met my price point criteria at $98.00 from the start, which was great
  • Brand: Vince Camuto Zella Patent Pump

    Vince Camuto Zella Patent Pump in ‘Petal Nude’

  • I wasn’t floored by the picture on Bloomingdales.com – but in real life, these are cute heels! I can wear them with skinny jeans and sass them up…or wear them with business attire and they’re just the right look for a professional setting. And OH so cute with a skirt or dress!
  • They are comfortable! I’m not saying I’d run a 5k in them…but I can wear them all day and my feet don’t kill. I can walk to my car with confidence vs. an awkward teeter
  • They also come in peep toe…and in black patent
  • Here is the link: http://www1.bloomingdales.com/shop/product/vince-camuto-pumps-zella-patent-platform?ID=584152&PseudoCat=se-xx-xx-xx.esn_results

This was a big find overall because I feel like I found a new brand that might be ‘perfect’ when it comes to my criteria…Vince Camuto makes a variety of shoes and now that I’ve had good luck with the Zellas, I feel good about the brand overall.

What is your shoe criteria? Have you found a ‘perfect’ nude pump?