Shoptiques can put another notch in its crystal-studded belt. The web site on Monday will add its seventh country launch, Mexico, adding about 75 of the nation’s best boutiques to its roster of 5,000-plus stores around the world in the U.S. Canada, U.K., France, Australia and the Netherlands.
“Mexico has always had such a vibrant and flavorful culture,” said Olga Vidisheva, founder and chief executive officer of Shoptiques. “It was only accessible through travel and tourism. We’re thrilled to introduce Mexico as a fashion destination for the international shopper.”
The Mexican boutiques will include Canamiel, which offers ready-to-wear in bold colors and graphic shapes such as wide-leg pants, a black top with royal blue and white panels and a gray asymmetric jacket; Carla Fernandez, a Mexico City-based collection inspired by the rich textiles of the country; Lorena Saravia, men’s and women’s rtw, mostly black with shots of color; Naked Boutique, an online multibrand store featuring up-and-coming independent designers, and Nude Studio, which started as a store in Monterrey, Mexico, and transformed into an e-commerce site selling brands such as C/meo Collective, Finders Keepers, Casper and Pearl.
There is also Avocet jewelry, necklaces, rings and bracelets with pyramid-shaped protrusions; Boutique Bloom, which sells Veronica Beard, Frame and Pam & Gela; Cynthia Buttonklepper, a rtw collection designed by a graduate of Istituto Europeo di Design for fashion design in Barcelona, who worked at Mavi in Istanbul; Seis 26, a women’s apparel retailer in Oaxaca City, Mexico, and Thousand Ponies, minimalist fashion from Mexico City.
Vidisheva believes that the appeal of Shoptiques lies in its assortment. At any given time, there are 100,000 live items on the site. Shoptiques provides boutique owners with back-end e-commerce capabilities, such as inventory management and web hosting. The web site, which launched in October 2011, splits a percentage of the sales between itself and the boutique owner.
Shoptiques’ team vets stores based on a set of criteria, including the quality of the merchandise and the design and aesthetics of the store. “A store has to be cute, because we have pick-up in-store as an option,” Vidisheva said. “Sometimes you order from Seamless and walk by a restaurant and think you want to die.”
Selling products from, say, Australia, helps Shoptiques customers stay ahead of the curve. While it’s fall in many parts of the world, it’s still summer in Australia.
Special products are key and Shoptiques doesn’t shy away from selling one-offs. “We find the unique pieces,” Vidisheva said. “Our customers aren’t brand-centric. They’re not label whores.”