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Kathy Eveland prepares to cut the ribbon during an event with the Anoka Area Chamber of Commerce last month to celebrate her store, the Eve & Me Boutique, moving downtown Anoka. (Photo courtesy of the Anoka Area Chamber of Commerce)

A clothing boutique that recently opened in downtown Anoka offers an integrated shopping experience for women of all sizes.

Founded in 2015, Eve & Me Boutique was originally located near the corner of Bunker Lake and Round Lake boulevards but moved downtown in November 2020.

Owner Kathy Eveland, of Andover, has relatives who wear plus-size clothes, and she realized she couldn’t shop with them easily because some sizes are typically found only in certain stores or relegated to a back corner.

“I wanted a store where everybody could shop, from size small to 3X in a boutique, because there’s not many out there that offer plus-size clothing or curvy-size clothing,” Eveland said.

Eveland said more designers now offer sizes that run the gamut, and she seeks out those that offer the same styles for everybody.

Rather than create a special section for plus-sizes, she displays all sizes together, throughout the shop. A lot of customers come in and ask where the plus-size section is, and she tells them it’s everywhere.

“They’re so used to going to a corner, that they need to learn they can look everywhere,” she said.

The idea for the shop came a few years ago, when Eveland was looking for a career change after waitressing for 18 years while her kids were at home. Being her own boss appealed to her, and she had some small business experience through the family pumpkin farm in Andover.

“I looked at my husband one day and said, ‘You know, I like to shop at those little boutiques around here, maybe I should open one,’” Eveland said.

“Go ahead,” he told her.

There was a steep learning curve the first year, but the shop did well.

When the opportunity arose to move downtown, Eveland was eager to take advantage of the walk-in traffic. After the November move, she had a ribbon-cutting with the Anoka Area Chamber of Commerce last month.

So far the transition is going well, she said, and walk-in traffic is up, boosted by the location as well as the nice weather around the holidays.

“It really is an amazing community down here,” she said.

Eve & Me is at 1916 Second Ave., Anoka.

 

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