PRELUDE: an action or event serving as an introduction to something more important.
In this dictionary definition, womenswear retailer Maureen Elliott found inspiration and a new name for her boutique at 1441 Bellevue Ave. in West Vancouver. "It's a new beginning," says the retailer who has shared her fashion counsel at this seaside location for two decades. The boutique sports more than a name change, new fixtures and a fresh coat of paint. There are new fashions in store. Prelude offers clothing, footwear and accessories that are "on trend but not trendy," says Elliott. The range of styles in store will appeal to women like herself who are busy moms in their 30s or 40s as well as adventurous dressers who are younger or older. "It's more the attitude of the customer than the age," says Elliott, who may sell the same Kerisma sheer knit top to two women a generation apart: a twenty something who'll wear it with a tank top and leggings and a baby boomer looking for that perfect layering piece for her travel wardrobe.
Now, in addition to co-ordinated collections that include German sportswear brands Betty Barclay and Blacky Dress there are edgier pieces, many of them less than $100, like a white tank dress from L.A. label Lush with of-the-moment feather graphic and high-low hem. Other favourites are viscose crinkle scarves in popsicle colours, vegetable-dyed walking shoes from Mjus of Italy, Co-Lab by Christopher Kon cross-body bags and KDD Studio hand-screened and embellished T-shirts.