When Kerry Conrardy moved her Southold salon Main Roots to a new location last fall, her imagination kicked into high gear: The building, at 53155 Main Road, was split into two storefronts, and she envisioned one day taking over the entire space. That opportunity came sooner than expected in March, when the landlord approached her to tell her that second space was available. She jumped on the idea of owning a clothing boutique with her cousin and business partner Kristen Savage.
“I approached Kristin because we’ve always been into shopping,” Conrardy said. “That’s what we do for fun.”
“Southold doesn’t really have a women’s clothing boutique,” Savage added. “So, it was bringing something to the town that wasn’t offered.”
“It didn’t stop us,” Savage said. “It was the online store that gave us the encouragement to keep going. People were really responsive and excited for us. The silver lining is that it gave us the time to prepare the space, to paint it, get the clothing racks and really lay it out the way we wanted it.”
After opening the physical store in June, Conrardy and Savage knew that the foot traffic brought in by the salon would help people to get to know Main Boutique.
“It’s fun to incorporate getting your hair done and shopping once you’re done,” Conrardy said. “You feel good about yourself.” She added that they sometimes also give salon customers 10 percent off at the boutique, as well.
The business partners wanted the clothes in the store to feel adaptable to a lot of occasions.
“We have a lot of versatility — things that could be dressed up, could be dressed down,” Savage said. “Just stuff that felt like home to us and would transition well.”
“If you just want to grab one piece, you could run to the beach or you could run to the store with it,” Conrardy added. Now that the store is open and locals and tourists have been browsing the collection of dresses, shirts, pants, skirts and jewelry, Savage and Conrardy are excited to meet their customers face to face.
“[We are excited for] interaction with actual people, just seeing people, seeing them happy to come out, listening to their feedback,” Savage said. “Some people had expressed we needed more sizes, so now we carry extra small up to 3X.”
Being both cousins and business partners wasn’t hard for either of the women.
“It kind of brings the family together because my mother will come work here. Her mother will come work,” Conrardy said. “It’s really fun for us.”
“We grew up like sisters because we’re four years apart,” Savage added. “We’ve lived down the road from each other our whole lives, so we get along very well. A business partnership was no big deal.”
Main Boutique is located at 53155 Main Road in Southold and is open Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.