Angela’s, Feel the Fashion Force

0:00 By Maureen Mancini Amaturo Angela Guitard is a fashion divining rod. She scouts out Milan, Paris, and New York showrooms to curate just the […]

Published May 1, 2018 11:37 PM
3 min read

0:00

By Maureen Mancini Amaturo

Angela Guitard is a fashion divining rod. She scouts out Milan, Paris, and New York showrooms to curate just the right looks that meet her criteria — classic with a bit of edge, fresh, not seen on every retail rack. “I seek out emerging and European designers,” she says. “I try to find designers that customers can’t find in department stores.” And that is one of the reasons Angela’s has been a fashion force on Purchase Street for seven years. When I mentioned fashion force, she smiled. “That makes it hard for me to go to the grocery store in my sweat pants.”

A business major who found her niche in retail in 1991, Guitard made her first impression in fashion as a key player in opening a Nordstrom’s flagship store and managing their designer division. “I wanted to study art. But you know how it is. Make a living with art? I’ve always loved fashion. I’ve been into fashion as long as I can remember.”

Her artist’s eye is obvious everywhere in her store, from garments to décor. Though she confessed to being hands-on in every aspect of her business and doing all the buying, she said she couldn’t do it without her daughter, Samantha. “She works with me, and she is a designer. Samantha does the private label part of the business and the visuals for the store.”

She opened her Rye boutique in March 2011. Why Rye? “Because I grew up here, and I felt like Rye had a lot of young, fashionable women, many who’d moved out from the city, who had nowhere to shop. It’s just a good town, and it draws traffic with lots of good restaurants.”

Angela’s has welcomed a varied clientele. “We have everything from T-shirts to cocktail dresses.” As the owner and business visionary, Guitard works toward not just variety, but a mix of pieces that have style expression with staying power. “A common thread among my customers is a taste for the classic with a bit of an edge. They are looking for something they can wear again, year to year, and still feel good in the look. We serve customers from avant-garde to classic…run the spectrum, career to city life.” Her goal is that the Angela’s shopping experience is “Fun, social. There’s a nice energy in the store.”

Sharing shopping and trend insights, she said, “One of the biggest mistakes a woman makes when shopping is to bring along a friend who nixes something that looks great on her. Feel good about what you’re wearing. Know what looks good on you and don’t feel forced into trends.” Speaking of trends, she noted, “A key piece for spring ’18 is a one-shoulder, flouncy, sexy summer dress. Find the one that suits <you>.” As for the key must-haves in every closet: “A leather jacket, a great knit top, a good pair of fitted jeans, my favorite is mid-rise skinny jeans, and a fun, colorful sandal or mule for this spring/summer.”

Who inspires Angela? “I like various designers. Not one in particular. Some of my favorites are Barbara Bui, Narciso Rodriguez, Cushnie et Ochs, and Magda Butrym.” Though she has many favorite designers, “Every bag that goes out of this store says, ‘Love what you wear.’”

<Angela’s, 24 Purchase Street, is open Monday-Saturday from 10-6.>

Caption: Angela Guitard always loves what she wears.

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