ellelauri is moving to Rittenhouse Square. As the brand becomes a staple in the Philly fashion scene, we chat with designer and founder, Liz Rymar, to find out what’s next.
You recently announced the move from The Shops at Liberty Place to Center City. What sparked this decision?
Liz Rymar: We had been looking for a storefront space in Philadelphia since last year. The plan was always to open up an elegant, chic store in Rittenhouse. We have been waiting patiently to find the perfect space. We saw what was happening in the retail industry in Philadelphia, specifically in this area, and couldn't be more excited and pleased with what we found! As much as we love Liberty Place, and the exposure and traffic we have gotten there, it was always intended to be a pop-up location. However, since it has been going so well there, we just made the decision to stay after the new store opens, at least through October and maybe even through the holidays.
You have stores in both Philly and Avalon. Why these two locations?
LR: Avalon is more seasonal. We are generally open there from April through October and special events, like Black Friday. That store was a case of being in the right place at the right time and making a great business connection. After finding the space, we opened that store in less than a month and had immediate success. I knew the town of Avalon well, as I grew up vacationing there with my family and friends every summer. I felt that ellelauri would be very successful there.
As for opening our flagship store in Philadelphia, I grew up right outside of the city and always planned on bringing ellelauri home. I moved to New York City right after college and lived and worked there for the past eight years. My goal was to eventually move back, work, and raise a family in Philadelphia, although I still keep a condo in New York City. Our new Rittenhouse flagship store and Hatboro design studio are helping to make my dream of making Philadelphia the ellelauri home base a reality.
What can our readers expect from ellelauri designs?
LR: To find unique, affordable, and luxurious pieces that can be worn anywhere. We manufacture everything in the Garment District in New York City and, in the near future, will create all of our designs locally. This allows us to keep a close eye on fit and detail. We use the highest quality fabrics that are extremely comfortable. Women will find clothing that can be dressed up or down with little effort and will make them feel confident.
Where do you get your design inspiration from?
LR: It varies with each collection but mostly traveling, movies, art, vintage shopping, and people watching. For our fall 2014 collection, we looked to the retro '60s for silhouettes and styles updated by modern day sophisticated, city fashion. The collection also mixes in strong flirty floral prints and clean tonal prints, sophisticated brocades as well as faux fur pieces to round out our collection. It consists of clean simple silhouettes along with drapey knitwear.
What's next for you and the brand?
LR: I want to continue to open and grow our chain of company-owned stores. We are in the process of opening our next Philadelphia location this year and are currently scouting sites for our next two stores. My vision is to expand our brand into accessories and home goods, eventually creating a truly accessible lifestyle brand. As previously mentioned, I am also close to finishing construction on a brand new design studio right outside of Philadelphia in Hatboro.