Fashion on the Road: Local boutique makes home visits

Ellie Sanchez, with Quelle Boutique in Harlingen, gets clothing and accessories ready to take to clients' homes. The boutique has not reopened its Downtown Harlingen location, opting for personal visits to residences. Courtesy photo

HARLINGEN – There’s a better option now to shopping for an outfit – and it comes on wheels.

Quelle Boutique owner Kelly Sanchez, along with her daughter Ellie, is bringing clothes to customers in their new “mobile boutique”.

In a way to adapt to the new normal, Sanchez thought of a way to take clothes to customers without putting them and other clients in danger.

Quelle Boutique is a clothing store that opened in 2007 and has been located in Downtown Harlingen. The store offers new clothing for women, as well as secondhand items.

Cowboy boots are also a featured item, along with home décor.

Quelle Boutique had to close at the end of February but has not been able to open since then.

Sanchez has her mother at home, who would usually help out at the store, and because of her health they decided to close.

“We haven’t felt like opening yet, but we thought maybe this mobile boutique would be a better way to keep some income flowing and not expose her and the rest of my family,” Sanchez said.

The mobile boutique started early May by taking appointments.

“We see people outside, but we also visit doctors’ offices and lobbies and stay enough for people to see the clothes for as long as they’d like,” she said.

The clothes taken in the car are all new, and Sanchez includes jewelry and other items in a tray for clients to take a look at.

Sanchez said the boutique has definitely suffered from closing, but word of mouth has helped to get a better influx.

“We have our ups and downs. I think when everything was opening up people were ready to get out and about, and we had few visits,” she said.

“Now that it is kind of tightening up again, I am hoping visits will come back. Something good has to come out,” Sanchez said.

Though the visits have not been numerous, Sanchez said it has been a great success from those who have made an appointment.

“People I think love the idea of it, to be able to shop at their home where they can feel safe and where they don’t have to get out in public,” she said.

“They are just excited to have a visit coming and encouraging, having to shop at their own yard,” she said.

Sanchez wears a mask during the visits and allows clients to try on inside their house and wait as they come back out. Clients can pay with phone apps such as Venmo or Cashapp and with cash.

 “When we just had to close, we received a huge shipment, and we started to think of a way to get it out to people and help them shop without endangering themselves,” Sanchez said.

Having a vehicle and a rack ready, the boutique was ready to go.

For more information about the mobile boutique, visit the Quelle Boutique Facebook page.