Couture makes move, expands
By KALEY CONNER
Two historic buildings in downtown Hays will have a new tenant by Nov. 1.
Couture for Men, which opened six years ago in Centennial Mall at 2510 Vine, will move downtown in a few months and add a women's line, owner Leland Olive said.
"I always wanted to go downtown, and it just never worked out before," he said. "My lease was coming up here, and I kind of outgrew this space. ... So I decided that it was time to move on and move down there."
The business will occupy two newly refurbished storefronts at 1109 and 1111 Main. Construction on the buildings' exterior is finished, but work is continuing to make the interior ready, Olive said, noting he hopes to being occupying the space as soon as possible. The business will open at the new location by Nov. 1 -- earlier if possible.
The store's name will change to Couture for Men and Women to reflect the addition of women's clothing and fragrances. Olive also hopes to add shoes and accessories in the future, he said.
"We have customers all the time who come in here and say, 'Oh my gosh, I wish we had a ladies' store like yours,' " Olive said.
The women's selection will include several brands that have proven popular at Couture for Men, such as Tommy Bahama and Buffalo. Other brands will include Vineyard Vines, Southern Tide and City Girl.
"We're going to try to do nothing you'll find anywhere else in town," he said. "I don't want to carry anything anyone else has."
The boutique's staff is expected to nearly double in size; four employees work in the current location.
The mall storefront has become crowded, with several racks of clothing spilling into the hallway. The downtown space will nearly double the amount of square footage, allowing more room to grow, Olive said.
"I don't know how we're going to get it all down there," Olive said with a chuckle, surveying the amount of men's apparel in his store. "New fall stuff is already coming in."
Initially, one storefront downtown will house formal clothing, such as men's suits and dress shirts. Tuxedo rentals also will continue.
Men's and women's casual and sports apparel will be in the second storefront, Olive said, noting that might change as the women's boutique grows.
"I think it should be a fun shopping experience that way," he said.
"When I opened the men's (boutique), I always wanted to open ladies' too. I had hoped down the line it would become reality."