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By Sue Scott
In 2016 Brenda and Shelby Moss decided to turn their love of fashion into an online and vendor business. Fast forward five years and that decision has matured into Ava Mae Boutique.
The brick-and-mortar shop has been in the planning stages for some time.
“We had been looking for the right location for over a year,” stated Brenda Moss, co-owner of the boutique. “We had already been purchasing the racks and display structures so when we found the right spot everything fell into place and we were able to open in a week.”
Even though they now have their own location on at 500 South Johnson in Kahoka, they still supply Ava Mae merchandise to several other boutiques in Southeast Iowa.
The boutique, named for Brenda’s paternal and maternal grandmothers, has a strong family bond. Their logo design was created to reflect that connection.
“The tree represents our family tree, and the heart shaped buttons are for family and clothing,” said Moss.
On the surface, the boutique may seem like your average clothing shop selling new children’s clothing for boys and girls from newborn to size 8, ladies clothing including plus sizes, accessories and bags. In reality, they have a nontraditional business model.
“Our hours are a little unusual,” commented Moss. “Shelby and I both work full time so we are open at times when we can be at the shop. Also, most of our customers work too, so our evening and weekend hours are more convenient for them. It’s really working out well.”
The boutique is open Thursday from 4:30 to 7:00, Friday 10:00 to 7:00, Saturday from 9:00 to 4:00 and Sunday from 10:00 to 2:00.
They also have unique, one-of-a-kind items.
“Shelby designs and creates the graphic t-shirts herself,” said Moss, “If you have an idea for something specific, she will be happy to make it for you.
In addition to the regular shop hours, they are willing to schedule appointment, and they still have their online business option too.