Our Santa Monica store turned one-year-old this month. In honor of our first anniversary we want you to get acquainted with our rock star store manager who makes it all happen! Meet Judy, she was involved in the LA store from the planning stages to the Grand Opening. Judy acted as my on-site eyes and ears with the construction, design, and the hiring of our amazing staff. Judy and I go waaaaay back, 25 years as college friends to be exact. When I started thinking about opening our first west coast store she was the first person I contacted. Get to know Judy and see why our LA store is a must visit on your next trip to sunny Cali . . .
Q: What did you think when Stacey approached you about opening and running the LA store?
A: It was perfect timing when Stacey called. We had been living here in California for about a year and a half. My kids were 17 and 19 and I had stayed home with them starting in K and 1st grade after a successful decade in real estate. My role as full-time Mom was coming to a close and I was searching for the next step. It felt like kismet when Stacey reached out.
Q: Why did you move to LA? What do you like about living in LA or Santa Monica?
A: We moved to LA for a lifestyle change from New York City. My husband was recruited by a company out here, and my daughter is an actress. Besides being a beautiful beach town with great walkability, we chose Santa Monica for proximity to Santa Monica College. My Son started there at 16 and we needed an easy commute for him.
Q: What is your favorite part about the store?
A: My favorite part of the store is meeting the families who come in to shop. I am a people person and I love hearing about the kids, their activities, and their siblings. We host events in the store like crafting, book club and even yoga! It allows us to really get to know our customers. The girls look so cute in the clothes. I love pulling dresses that I know will look great on them. Their little faces are so adorable when they come out of the dressing room modeling their favorite piece.I am sooo excited to see the little boys in our upcoming Spring line!
Q; Any favorite gift items for holiday?
A: We just received charm necklaces. They are on a simple brass chain with a different color tassel, and a charm that says several different mantras (powerful, spiritual, perseverance etc.) and then an animal to match. I think they are fun and will be a thoughtful holiday gift. A couple of my other favorites are the Pom Pom Baskets and our new line of retro toys.
Q. Using Pink Chicken LA as a starting point, what's your ideal Santa Monica afternoon?
A: I rarely leave Santa Monica and Venice ...if I don't have to..you know..LA Traffic. My ideal Saturday off would be riding my bike to the shop on a Saturday to check in with Mercedes, Heather, Sabrina or Katrina (our awesome staff!!) See how the day is going, ...do a little re-merching. Get back on my bike ride down the hill to the bottom of the famous Santa Monica Stairs (168 stairs 105 feet above the PCH) do 2 set of the stairs ...get back on my bike ride down the beach path ...remind myself how fortunate I am to live in this place ...then meet my hubby at our favorite little brunch stop called Flake, on Rose Avenue in Venice. In the evening ..it’s always fun to walk down to the beach with my dog Maggie and watch the sunset! Seeing my kids at some point during the day would make it really ideal!
Q: What do you think are some trademark LA style statements? How do you think Pink Chicken fits into Santa Monica's fashion and shopping landscape?
A: Personally I found myself going through a transition, style-wise, when we moved to LA from NY. I found myself gravitating towards soft cottons and easy casual dressing. LA is known for everyone wearing yoga clothes all day long. I do see many people wearing workout clothes, but I see an equal amount of women wearing relaxed yet elegant clothing. I think Pink Chicken fits amazingly well into the Los Angeles fashion landscape. Throw on one of our Marlow tops with a pair of jeans and boots and you look stylish yet comfy taking a trip to Whole Foods. Customers come into our store in the beginning for our signature girl's dresses. After a visit or two they try our wonderful cottons for their daughters. Pink Chicken is a versatile line that goes from the playground to a special occasion. The quality and details are really what set us apart. Stacey and the design team really know what they are doing!