Elitra Facets of Fashion, Rose Bay, Sydney
Tell us about you and your business
Elitra was established in 2019 by two sisters. Anelia and Madga, who decided to create a personalised and enjoyable boutique experience.
Anelia has been in the field of architecture for over forty years. Magda has spent over fifteen years as a performer on stage and camera, performing in elaborate costumes.
Drawing on their lived experiences the boutique was styled as a French Provincial boudoir. The enchanting change rooms have extra comforts for a premium retail experience.
Amidst the current climate and the move towards slow fashion we decided to curate classic, unique and timeless pieces. Mainly featuring natural fibres that are practical and chic, which we compliment with minimal seasonal trends. All of the designers we work with are based in Australia and Europe. This allows for a truly Euro-Aussie collection.
Having lived in Rose Bay since 1990 it was natural for us to set up shop locally.
Rose Bay has a great village atmosphere and we have found the community is very supportive of all local business. Since first opening our doors we have built up a regular flow of customers.
How have you been impacted by COVID-19?
After licking our wounds from the summer fires and smoke pollution, which kept our customer base at home we were heavily impacted when the onslaught of COVID-19 surfaced.
We had to close our doors and reluctantly put off three part time staff. As a recently established retailer, the set up and running costs were not yet covered by the business operations. When we stopped trading our cash flow stopped but our rent and outgoings continued.
How have you adapted to the restrictions?
Our landlord came to the party with a rent reduction and we are grateful for this. Although we are still using borrowings to pay the reduced rent and some wages. With the extra time on hand, energies were directed to the website in the hope that online shopping could be stimulated. We found our customers are not generally online shoppers and prefer the in store retail experience. We left a contact number on the door of the boutique for customers to call if they wanted a personal shopping session. None of the locals took up that option.
What have you learnt over this time?
We really miss having the store open and offering a personalised shopping experience to the local community.
People were focusing on coping with job losses and adjusting to staying at home and working from home.
Protecting themselves and their older family members was a priority. New clothing was not high on their agenda during the crisis period.
What do you see for the future of retail?
We have just opened our doors for a few hours each day over the weekend. People were coming in and happy to see that we have reopened. Many locals are wanting to support us as a local business, which has us filled with gratitude.
Customers are looking for quality made garments that can offer longevity. We feel this sentiment is echoed on many levels, and see greater support for local and Australian made products.
Anelia & Magda in store showcasing the One P collection