By Samantha Murphy:
A stylish new boutique for women has recently opened its doors on West Utica Street in the Elmwood Village. MS Eye Candy, run by owners Siobhan Taylor and Miranda Evans, offers contemporary, couture pieces at an affordable price.
The store officially opened on May 31, and business has been going great.
“We’re really happy with business so far,” Miranda Evans said. “We even had a few random sales while we were still renovating the building. The interest is high and the community has been very excited to see us open.”
As for their location, at 292 West Utica Street, they couldn’t be happier.
“We chose the Elmwood District because we love the privately owned stores and restaurants,” Evans said. “We wanted to be in an area with other small businesses. It’s nice to meet the other small business owners and work together and kind of tag team off one another.”
With so many other small clothing stores in the surrounding area, MS Eye Candy sets itself apart from the others, not only with its clothing but also in price.
“We’re not your basic store,” Siobhan Taylor said. “Our thing is to be a little different, be unique. Everything we sell has its own little flair. It might look basic at first, but then you’ll notice the buttons, or some sequins, or ruffles.”
Miranda Evans also added, “Our goal in this economy and in Buffalo is to find quality, trendy pieces at an affordable price. We don’t want to be a super high-end boutique. We want to be affordable for the working woman or the college student.”
Before MS Eye Candy opened its doors to the public, Evans and Taylor created a mini business in hosting local trunk shows.
“Prior to opening the store, we did trunk shows for a whole year,” Evans said. “We were able to learn our clientele, build some clientele, and come up with a comfortable price point.”
Siobhan Taylor also added, “We created a small following. We were always successful in hosting these small parties, but we felt were leaving so many people out. We figured let’s open up a store and be accessible to everybody.”
While the business is already seeing success, both owners admit there are some challenges in opening up your own small business.
“Getting to the new customer is definitely our biggest challenge,” Taylor said. “There are just so many people out there. Reaching out to the people we don’t know is difficult. But we plan to do some advertising in the future.”
As for their prices, everything ranges from around $40 to $150.
“Our brands stand out from other mall brands,” Taylor said. “You might be paying $40 instead of $20 for a piece, but you’re happier. It’s something different that no one else is going to have. You don’t have to worry about going out and seeing someone with the same dress.”
While many of the brands they carry are from up and coming West Coast designers, some are also from independent, local designers as well.
“We don’t necessarily go after big brands,” Evans said. “Many of them are still working from home, but they’re putting their passion and their creativity into their pieces. We love to support those local designers.”
As far as business partners go, Evans and Taylor couldn’t make a better team.
“It really works out well. Everybody pulls their own weight,” Taylor said.
Evans added, “We make a good team. I do more of the business end, like the faxing, contracts, and paperwork. Siobhan does more of the in store work, like changing the mannequins and coordinating the store.”
MS Eye Candy Boutique
292 West Utica Street
Buffalo, NY 14222
Hours: Open daily from 10 am to 6 pm
Visit them online at www.msicandy.com
Like them on Facebook
Follow them on Twitter at mseyecandy24
Photo 1: Owners of MS Eye Candy, Siobhan Taylor and Miranda Evans
Photo 2: MS Eye Candy Boutique on W. Utica Street