May Doherty: Owner of CHIC Consignment
I am super excited to share with you all my latest It Girl, My Doherty, owner of CHIC Consignment in Andover. For those of you who haven't heard of CHIC, it is a consignment shop whose goal is to provide personal service and a captivating shopping experience by offering an ever-changing collection of affordable fashion to meet your personal style. CHIC seeks to inspire women to live their dream and wear their passion through honesty, integrity and loyalty. To CHIC, consignment is sophisticated, high-level recycling. It helps the environment by keeping clothes out of landfills and promotes the circular nature of fashion. Any unsold items are either returned to the consignor or donated. (CHIC donates monthly to two local charities.)
For as long as she can remember, May loved fashion. As a child she played dress up endlessly and even had custom made Barbie clothes. Her dad’s artistic talent and mom’s fashion sense fostered an appreciation for beautiful things and self expression which gave May the confidence to be herself - even when it was quite different from everyone else.
May began her career in retail at Jordan Marsh (now Macy's), eventually rising to the role of fashion director where she consulted buyers, developed private label products and helped mold the overall corporate vision. Between marriage and raising three kids, she continued to pursue creative endeavors including event planning, floral design, and home decorating.
CHIC Consignment opened in 2008 by a different owner. In 2011, after outgrowing its space, CHIC moved to a much larger space, at which time May joined the team as a sales associate and floor manager. She loved getting back to her retail roots and quickly recognized the genius of the consignment business model. Four years later, in November 2016, she was presented with the opportunity to purchase the business and took the plunge. Over the past 2 years, May has worked hard to develop CHIC as a recognizable brand, associated with shopping and/or consigning luxury labels in a boutique-like environment with great customer service. "As a business owner I am committed to fostering relationships with customers and consignors while managing the store’s overall vision to curate a collection of contemporary and designer merchandise at affordable prices," said May. "That's why our tagline is luxury for less."
There are a few other consignment shops in Boston, so I wanted to know what made CHIC stand out. According to May, "Outstanding customer and consignor service. CHIC is clean, bright, well organized and easy to shop. Customers are greeted by friendly faces and sales staff whose styling skills can help customers find that one special piece or a complete outfit. Though we carry mainstream brands such as Lilly Pulitzer, Lululemon and J.Crew, it’s our extensive selection of authentic designer labels such as Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Hermes, Gucci, Prada and Burberry that have established us as the leading source of authentic, pre-loved designer consignment north of Boston."
As always, I ask my It Girls what their one piece of advice is for other women starting their own business. According to May, "You must be passionate about what you are doing so it doesn’t feel like work. And remember, it’s never too late to reinvent yourself and start a new venture, even at 57!"
If you are looking to get into consigning your pieces, or purchasing from CHIC, they now have a private Facebook group called CHIC Insiders. Group members have the chance to view and purchase CHIC's latest arrivals 24 hours before anyone else. They also post live videos every Thursday night at 6 pm showing off their latest and favorite pieces.