Sooz is offering individual style at her first boutique
- Credit: Su Anderson
The strength of any shopping town is the range of quirky and independent shops and Ipswich has a really interesting mix of independents, in the Saints area of town especially.
Local mum Sooz Miller opened her Fat Bottom Girl boutique in St Nicholas Street some 18 months ago - her first venture into business on her own.
She sells a colourful range of women’s clothing - for women of all sizes, despite the slightly comic name she has chosen for her shop.
She also sells jewellery and accessories.
Mother of four children Sooz said: “This is my first business and it has been a steep learning curve.
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“I used to work at the Tea Boutique before, and this is my first shop
“I absolutely love my little shop.
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“I just love coming in here every day and walking through the door.
“Yet it does consume you. I am often up late doing paperwork - and worrying.
“There are so many different things to do when you run your own business.
“And I have to fit it in between being a mum.
“That keeps me pretty busy.”
Sooz sources all her dresses and othere stock herself, only buying one or two of any individual clothing item in each size.
So customers know they are getting something different than they would from a national named chain store trader.
Some are Italian and German, as well as English.
“It is layering style - the layer look,” she explained.
“I am constantly changing the look of the shop,” she said, “I have a new floor now and a new counter, and more space.
“On the wall too there are changes.
“There are reindeer and lion heads from The House In Town. I love them.
“I would like to get the moose as well.
“There is a great community of business down here, and it is nice to support each other,” she said.
When I dropped in there were several customers looking through clothes and other items including one customer who was visiting the town from Chelmsford and had passed the shop before, but at a time when it hadn’t been open, and had been determined to return when it was to see what was on offer.
“It is great to see customers from out of town,” added Sooz.
“It is what Ipswich needs to do.”
Her student daughter Paige and hairdresser Beth modelled some of the clothers for our photo shoot.
To find The Saints, set off from the Cornhill and walk past Giles Square and along Queen Street in the direction of the Waterfront.