Two new boutiques are open in Wytheville, offering everything from clothing and shoes to jewelry, handbags and more. Sizes at both stores range from small to 3X.
Also making business news, local bank BBT will merge with SunTrust Bank to create the country’s sixth largest bank.
Glitz N Glam
Glitz N Glam owner Tina Williams started selling her handmade jewelry on Facebook six years ago. About a year ago, she added a clothing line. As her business grew, she rented space at the Wythe Refuge and Mercy House on Seventh Street, eventually outgrowing that space. Now, she has set up shop at 155 E. Main St. in the former Rock Star Gems location.
“I’ve been doing this six years, and it just keeps growing and growing,” she said.
The store offers women’s clothing, including leggings and tunics, children’s clothing, jewelry and accessories, handbags and even antiques.
Williams opened the downtown store Feb 5. For her, it’s a family affair. Her sister Brenda Krabee makes the jewelry; her sister-in-law Kathy Williams finds the antiques and clothing in the junior and misses line; daughter Heather Ayers handles social media and the children’s line; sister-in-law Heather Gregory makes soaps, balms, bath salts and other toiletry items; and her sister Sandi Olbrich, a singer/songwriter, has a praise and worship CD at the store.
Originally, from the Bluefield, West Virginia, area, Williams has lived in Wythe County for 17 years, working at Wythe Eye Associates and most recently at Hospice of Southwest Virginia.
Hours are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The store is closed on Wednesdays and Sundays.
Devoted to You / The Pink Elephant
Owners Tonya Riggins and Cheryl Shaver have combined their businesses into one location at 195 S. First St., on the corner of First and Spring streets. Devoted to You Clothing Boutique and The Pink Elephant Accessories opened for business today.
Fort Chiswell resident Riggins is the owner of Devoted to You, a boutique that offers clothing and accessories with a bohemian vibe.
“I started it because I’ve always been into clothes,” she said, adding that God put it in her heart to open a store and “everything just fell into place.”
The store’s name is a testament to her faith, as is the store’s motto of “God Made All Things Beautiful.” Her clothing ranges in size from junior to plus sizes. She also sells shoes and jewelry.
The former manager of retail clothing stores like Maurices and Cato Fashions, Riggins had been selling her inventory online on Faceboook and Instagram, but when she and her husband, Jamie, sold their house recently, she didn’t have room for her clothing. They are living in an RV until they build a new home.
Riggins also works as a phlebotomist at Carilion New River Medical Center in Radford, where she has been employed for 15 years.
She knew Shaver from their church, The Millennium World Outreach. Shaver, who has sold Mary Kay cosmetics for nearly three decades, has her studio in the First Street store. When she learned that Riggins needed space for clothing and accessories, she offered to share her space.
In addition, Shaver decided to sell accessories from the store, as well. Opening such a store had always been in the back of her mind, she said, but the finances never worked themselves out.
“I prayed on it because the door closed (on her idea) two years ago,” Shaver said, adding that she met with her pastor who shared that he had awakened one morning with a vision of her selling jewelry. That same week, an unexpected insurance settlement from an accident several years ago came through for Shaver.
“That gave me the capital to buy the jewelry, and it’s grown from there,” she said, adding that she orders her accessories to match the clothes Riggins sells.
“It’s so neat how everything unfolded one step at a time,” said Shaver, who has lived in Wythe County for 26 years.
She and Riggins are both stylists.
“I can take a plain outfit and make it look like a million bucks,” Shaver said, adding that she will keep her Mary Kay studio in the space, too.
“I will still have space for my Mary Kay studio, where I do parties and makeovers and training,” she said. “I’ve been doing it 29 years, so I don’t see my not doing it. It’s still a big part of my life and a big part of what I do.”
Devoted to You and The Pink Elephant will stay true to their boutique theme.
“We will not be reordering the same clothes,” Shaver said. “Once it’s gone from the store, it’s gone. We will sell limited edition items so women here will not be wearing the same things.”
Shaver said she and Riggins are happy to see more women’s clothing stores in Wytheville.
“We are not in competition,” she said. “We are here to uplift each other as women and as business owners in town so that women have a choice other than Walmart.”
Store hours are Tuesday-Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Closed Sundays and Mondays.
BB&T and SunTrust announced their merger earlier this week. The combination of the two franchises creates the sixth-largest U.S. bank holding company with 275 years of combined experience. The company will have approximately $442 billion in assets, $301 billion in loans and $324 billion in deposits serving more than 10 million households in the U.S.
In December, BB&T announced its Rural Retreat branch will close in April, leaving one branch open in Wythe County, and two ATMS, all in Wytheville. There is also a branch/ATM in Bland.
At that time, a BB&T official said that more banking clients are choosing to conduct their banking business digitally both at BB&T and in the financial industry as a whole.
“While branches are still an important part of BB&T’s business model, we’re constantly evaluating all of our locations in terms of client-use patterns and convenience within the markets we serve,” Vice President of Corporate Communications David White said.
The closest SunTrust Bank is in Radford.
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