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The Style Keepers

Chic Boutiques from the Owners' Perspective

Deb Placey

Co-owner of The Post

The Post’s style:

“Our tag line says it all! City.Country.Coast. Whether you grew up in NY City, have a son or daughter in the city, or an apartment in the city, we’ve got your city vibe covered.

“The Connecticut countryside is a sophisticated landscape, from horse country to weekend getaways that are all about comfort and relaxation.

“And then of course, we’ve got the coastal vibes that make our area so unique. Whites, blues, and sand-inspired neutrals dominate our space.”

Where they find merchandise:

“Three or four times a year we do the big ‘Markets' in NYC, Las Vegas, or Atlanta."

“We also shop locally! We only have local artists and photographers on the walls. We have everything from Stowed Home furniture owned by a Westport mom, to candles made in Rowayton and Bridgeport.”

How they choose what they sell:

“Laura and I shop together for almost everything we buy. And we have a rule: if it’s not a ‘heck yeah!’ from both of us, we pass!”

Annette Norton

Owner of Savvy + Grace

Describing Savvy + Grace:

“A collaboration of eclectic and personally pleasing items for oneself and gift giving.

“I love the vibe I get when I go into a cool and interesting store on the Cape or when I’m on vacation. I want customers to feel transported and feel like they are somewhere special when they walk through my doors.”

How she chooses merchandise:

“I originally put items in my store that I was attracted to and felt one would want or need. However, I hold my customers in my thoughts and now find myself purchasing items when I see something I know a particular customer would love.”

Words of appreciation:

“When I drive to work I remind myself how lucky I am to be here, on Main Street in downtown, and how truly beautiful our downtown is. 

Her next store would be:

“If I could open another store in Westport, I would love to open an arcade like we had when I was a kid (Arnies). It would be super cool for the kids to have a safe and fun place like that to hang out with friends. Although I’d probably want to bring it up a notch with a café inside.”

Shari Lebowitz

Owner of Bespoke Designs

Bespoke Designs’ style:

“We’re lovers of color, texture, and mixing old world finds with contemporary designs. The store is a direct representation of this - international, carefully curated, and with a definite European bent, we offer items that you’ll struggle to find elsewhere.

“Naturally curious, the store’s aesthetic is inspired by my travels. I love discovering new artists and artisans and giving these talents a platform in our store, and ultimately in our customers’ homes.”

Where they find inspiration:

“We find inspiration all over! From our travels, instagram, shows, late night deep dives online - you name it, if there’s something great out there, we’ll find it. For fall, you’ll be seeing lots of ceramics from Portugal and Italy.

“If we love it and believe it to be both beautiful and special, we think that you will too.”

Advice to customers:

“Ask us questions! We have connections that spread far and wide, especially with vendors, and more than likely we’ll have access to what you’re looking for, but we won’t know how to help if we don’t know what’s on your mind.”

Hot item:

“Candles. What a surprise, but we’re happy to feed the obsession!”

Cristina Villegas

Owner of YOYA

YOYA’s style:

“Global, eclectic, whimsical, modern.”

In choosing her merchandise:

“I follow my instincts and I buy what I love. I only buy things that inspire me and that make me happy.”

What she sells:

“I try to keep the assortment unique. I don’t want to carry what other stores are carrying. My store is not for basics; it’s for special pieces that make you smile.”

A good customer is:

“Someone who trusts my judgement and is willing to take risks, who wants to have fun with their home, how they dress their kids, and how they represent their individual style.”

Hot items: 

“My handmade sheep from North Africa and leggings from MOLO - great prints, super good quality, and fun colors. For home, anything handmade from Colombia sells like crazy.  

“I work directly with artisans in my home country of Colombia and Mexico, so I always have unique pieces that no other stores in the area carry.”

  • Annette Norton, owner of Savvy + Grace (Photo: Mindy Briar)
  • Deb Placey, co-owner of The Post. (Photo: Mindy Briar)
  • (Photo: Ellyett Photography)
  • (Photo: Kate Jordan))
  • Hotel silver. (Photo: Kate Jordan))
  • Shari Lebowitz, owner of Bespoke Design. (Photo: Julia Dagastino))
  • Cristina Villegas, owner of YOYA.
  • (Photo: Kate Jordan)
  • Bespoke Notes, You Are My Sunshine.
  • (Photo: Kate Jordan)
  • (Photo: Kate Jordan)
  • (Photo: Kate Jordan)