If you've strolled around the Tsawwassen Shopping Centre, then you've probably noticed the beautiful window of X-Treme Clothing Boutique. Lavishly decorated with fabrics and the latest fashions, the owner says it's a big talking point for customers who wander inside.
"Our window here sells our clothes," says Lisa Fleischer. "Even when we're closed. We will sometimes come in to messages on our voice mail that say, 'I want the top on the right, the top on the left in such-and-such a size and I'll be in to pick it up later today.'"
Lisa's new business has been a smashing success since she opened in November of 2017, garnering notice from local shoppers and businesses alike. She is currently nominated for two awards in the 2018 Delta Chamber of Commerce Hats Off to Excellence gala, in the categories of "Rising Star" for best new business and "Small Business of the Year."
Although the name has only slightly changed, the business is completely new. Sunny Tsawwassenites might recall the previous store being called Xtreme Clothing Co., carrying a line of clothes for young shoppers. Lisa says since opening she rebranded as a "boutique" and now carries lines that appeal more to the demographics of Tsawwassen, mainly for women aged 30 to 60, however something can be easily found for any age.
"Tsawwassen as a community is amazing. I think it's been so welcoming to us and really supportive of our store. We definitely took feedback within the first few weeks when they came in and told us, look, we want a store for real women, that has sizes that go from extra-small to extra-large."
Lisa has had as lifetime of experience in the retail clothing industry, beginning at the age of 16 working with her mother’s boutique in Los Angeles. Since the age of 18 she's worked in retail management for stores like BonMarche, DKNY, BCBG, and as a wholesaler with Nygard managing Western Canada.
Most recently, Lisa was a manager of a large store at the Tsawwassen Mills. But she decided it was time to branch out on her own, and with that in mind she looked for a great location with a lot of foot traffic, situated in a beautiful community. In the end, she chose Sunny Tsawwassen over the big city of Vancouver.
Despite being a small business in a small town, Lisa says she uses her social media to connect with shoppers outside Delta. Her Instagram and Facebook accounts are updated daily and always feature the newest clothing lines, along with inspirational messages to perk up anyone's day.
"We've brought in people from Langley and Abbotsford," says Lisa. "We've even had somebody drive as far as Mission to come and see the store. And it gives our area more traffic and I think it helps the other small businesses as well."
One of the challenges Lisa says she enjoys is keeping her inventory fresh for her loyal customers, many of whom come by weekly to look at the new stock.
X-Treme Clothing Boutique focuses on trying to carry Canadian brands, along with a pledge to keep looking for ethically-sourced brands that follow Fair Trade practices. Some of those brands include Vancouver-based Gilmour Clothing and Toronto's Pink Martini Collection, and Montreal’s Yoga Jeans, which feature high quality materials made in boutique factories here in Canada.
"So, yes, it will be a bit more expensive than if you bought lines made in China. But the quality is there so when we sell it I feel good because I'm offering a product that's of high quality, supporting local and that's really important to me."
You can find X-Treme Clothing Boutique on the northeast side of 12 th Avenue and 56th Street, between Delta Geeks and The Run Inn.