What’s Hot, What’s Not: Shopping for Women’s Fashion on The Plateau
Issue: 2021/05 – May
The choices for shopping for Women’s Clothing on the Highlands-Cashiers Plateau ensure a fun shopping adventure.
Who What Wear, that fashionable website that pops up in our news feeds, offers us a daily look at what’s hot, what’s not and what wardrobe items we need each season to refresh our look.
The good news is that armed with our new fashion sense, all we have to do is head to our local small businesses to find the pieces, outfits or accessories we’re looking for.
Shopping in Highlands and Cashiers is such a fun experience. Highlands has even been named one of USA Today’s best small town shopping experiences! The boutiques are adorable, the personal attention unparalleled, and you’ll never have to worry about crowds.
A Jones Company is a charming boutique located in the center of Cashiers Village, directly across the street from the Cashiers Farmers Market. They offer a wide variety of curated goods for living and giving. Among their most beloved lines are Johnny Was Clothing, Barefoot Dreams, Juju Jams pajamas, Nest Fragrances and hand-crafted jewelry. A shopping bonus here is that their adjacent business, Cashiers Candy Shoppe, offers you a chance to refuel after a day of shopping on your favorite treats such as Jelly Belly jellybeans, or a small batch confection made lovingly by a small American owned candy maker.
There’s a new star on the Highlands retail scene and that star is Allison Diane Clothing, located at Bryson Square in downtown Highlands. Stepping into this modern boutique is a delight to the senses. From their artful and tasteful décor that incorporates just enough of an industrial vibe to get the senses stirring, to their thoughtfully curated inventory, you’ll find that perfect outfit or accessory here.
Their clothing lines include Able jeans, tops and purses. They also have an extensive line of cute, stylish, easy to wear and care for clothing.
Season-less cashmere is also one of their specialties and they offer an extensive line of tops, scarves, sweaters, ponchos and accessories from such lines as Courtland Park, Two Bees Cashmere, and Johnsons of Elgin.
They also carry an extensive line of jewelry and purses to complete your look. Stop by today for a shopping experience you’ll be sharing with your friends.
Allison Diane Clothing is located in Bryson Square at 114 North Fourth Street, Unit 2.
Anna Herz, owner of Annawear on Main Street in Highlands, shared that comfy clothes are all the rage right now and that “joggers and matching sets with a fun pair of sneakers is the look of the season. Also, flowy dresses. Neutral colors remain as popular as ever, but people are wanting to add some bright colors as well. Jeans are a staple in every closet. Boot cut, straight leg and high waisted styles are very popular denim trends.” You’ll find all of that and more at Annawear.
Bear Tracks Travel Center at 10932 Rosman Highway at Lake Toxaway has a few questions for you for your next outdoor adventure: Forgot to pack something?; Leave your belt at home?; Need some more socks?; How about some new jeans?; Could you use a new pair of boots?; How about a cool cowboy hat?
This outfitting store has Wolverine, Wrangler, Carhartt, Woolrich, Red Head, M & F Western, Nacona and Justin branded products, meaning you’re covered from head to toe. Even if you’re not in the market for hiking/outdoor gear, souvenir logo T-shirts for you, a family member, or someone special back home are always a big hit.
Bags on Main at 364 Main Street in Highlands carries today’s best brands for him and her, with an emphasis on customer service. And don’t miss Snoozies, a comfy cross between a sock and slipper, with soft soles and a brushed fleece exterior.
Owner Diane Brady co-founded Bee Bags with her sister Ginny in 2011. In the 10 years since, the business has evolved into what is now Bella Cotn and Bee Bags. They proudly feature sleepwear, apparel, shoes, boots, and accessories for the chic, sophisticated woman. Bella Cotn pajamas are manufactured in Peru using the world’s finest pima cotton known for its exceptional durability, softness, and brilliant luster. Bee Bags handbags are handcrafted on site using the finest Italian and South American leather hides. Each and every Bee Bag is a one-of-a-kind creation. Stop in at 236 Highways 107 North in Cashiers and make yourself at home at Bella Cotn and Bee Bags
Palm Beach, Florida’s favorite place to go for comfortable, sophisticated style has made its way to Highlands. C. Orrico has been setting the standard for classic American style since 1985. Their bright, colorful pieces are perfect for a day of shopping or a night out on the town.
Dutchman’s Casual Living Store on Main Street in the heart of Highlands is a rambling two-story gallery loaded with custom furniture vignettes, fabric swatches and upholstery samples in a full spectrum of colors and textures, and kitchen accessories. But it’s also home to a surprising range of handmade soaps, beautifully scented candles, and decorative jewelry. Discovering these surprises in the midst of this two-story emporium is half the fun.
Elevation at 330 Main Street in Highlands is a local women’s clothing, shoe and accessory boutique. Its hallmark is the warm, exceptional customer service extended by its employees. It’s a marvelously indulgent experience and it makes every visit a delight.
Outdoor adventurers won’t want to miss Headwaters Outfitters at 25 Parkway Road in Rosman. They offer self-guided paddling and tubing trips with reservations, and guided fly fishing by appointment only. Their retail store/fly shop offers a great selection of hiking clothes and accessories. Forks of the River Taproom is adjacent and often has a food truck on hand, so enjoy a cold beverage and bite to eat while you’re there.
Which brings us to Lenz Gifts, straddling the divide between Cashiers and Highlands at 1473 US 64 West. This unassuming cabin houses an exquisite selection of must-be-seen, must-be-experienced high-end luxury intimates and sleepwear by Hanro, Natori, Feraud Paris, and Rosch.
Martha Anne’s…on the Hill on Fourth Street in Highlands, offers shoes and apparel for the independently stylish woman with a sense of fun. Martha Anne has carefully selected this collection, and it’s just as surprising as she is. The fun part of the equation comes out when you consider the shoe selection. There’s a playfulness about the styles that shows Martha Anne is the woman making the decision. But really, that sense of joy extends to the coats, and clothing, and designer pieces that adorn this charming boutique. Come in for a browse and you’ll be surprised and seduced by this eclectic collection.
McCulley’s, a Highlands tradition at 343 South Fourth Street and on Main Street for over 35 years, and the South’s premier stop for all things cashmere and more, now has a picturesque location in Cashiers at 24 B Canoe Point next to Rusticks and Vivianne Metzger Antiques. You’ll find the largest selection of Scottish cashmere in the United States and exclusive designer fashions.
Owner Mary Bynum and her friendly and knowledgeable staff look forward to seeing their loyal customers who’ve counted on them for years as their “go to” cashmere source, as well as meeting new friends who are looking for the best quality clothing at fair prices. This rustically elegant boutique is a delight for the senses. Naturally, the first thing you’ll notice is the luxurious 100 percent Scottish cashmere, offered in a mind-boggling array of colors and styles – sweaters, scarves, wraps, vests, socks and more.
McCulley’s also features one of the largest selections of Belford Cottons as well as their finely-crafted merino wool, silks and pima cotton items.
With a name like The Mountain Mermaid, you know you’re in for an enchanting shopping experience, coupled with a healthy dose of whimsy.
That’s the effect owner Becca Burch is aiming for, and she’s had a lifetime to fashion the image.
She’s stocked her boutique with lines that reflect her sense of style, comfort and quality.
For instance, shoppers can expect to find a full range of St. James styles. This French-made line has won an international reputation for its carefully composed sweaters and tops, maintaining its fashion fundamentals and timeless styles.
In much the same way a mermaid would browse through an undersea garden, a shopper can’t resist being drawn through the rooms behind the showroom, encountering scarves, shoes, resort wear, and athleisure wear.
Among the collection are the eye-catching resort styles of IBKUL, a line that features UPF 50, the IceFil cooling element (which can cool the body five degrees in normal use), underarm mesh treatment along with wicking and anti-microbial features in exclusive prints and patterns.
“I want to offer clothing that’s unique to our area, while complementing the two shops that are our neighbors — The Look and Sashay Around,” says Becca. “This is a place where you can relax and browse, just like the feeling that you get from Cashiers itself.”
It’s located on 107 North, approximately 100 yards from the Crossroads.
Are Nancy and Bob retiring from Nancy’s Fancys and The Exchange?
No way! Not after 40 years! In fact, they’re getting bigger and better. Look for their expansive new space this summer —two miles from Highlands’ Main Street on Highway 106 with lots of parking, and lots of porches for entertaining. They’ll be staging a Grand Opening this summer.
Narcissus at the Crossroads in Cashiers brings a decidedly European flair, thanks to owner Guiliana Kaufman, originally from Florence Italy. Guiliana has worked with top designers and has the background, creativity and talent to bring the best to you. At Narcissus you will find quality and unique clothes, beautiful Italian scarves, and one of a kind jewelry to compliment your every look. Narcissus clothing offers a refined touch for all seasons and is a must see while in Cashiers.
Nora & Co. at 40 Village Walk Way in Cashiers is a carefully-curated collection of art, accessories for the home, apparel, and accessories and gifts for yourself and loved ones. If you’re committed to finding the unusual and the fanciful, well, here’s the place. It’s a boutique that demands an attentive browse. Nora herself offers free gift-wrapping and she can ship items anywhere in the country. For more information, call (828) 743-1040, but you really owe yourself a visit.
You’re on the Dillard Road and see the Peak Experience signs. Have you actually taken the time to stop? You should. You really, really should.
As owner Victoria Ingate says, “We hear it all the time. ‘We drive by but this is the first time we’ve stopped.’ These folks always come back.”
You may be familiar with the name, Peak Experience, because of the colorful SolMate Socks they carry. These colorfully mismatched socks are made right here in a family owned mill in North Carolina. The stunning hand-painted silk tunics and shawls from Tennessee have become collectors’ items, perhaps because no two are alike. There’s nothing like wearing something that no one else in the world will have!
Robin’s Nest in Cashiers carries a variety of apparel designed for the contemporary woman. Most of their lines are designed for mom and daughter like Clara Sun Woo, Foxcroft, Gretchen Scott, Tribal, French Dressing, Habitat, and Terra SJ and Liv. They also carry handmade scarves, embroidery wraps and jewelry from a variety of artisans to complete your look. They can outfit you from casual wear to more upscale outfits for those special occasions.
You don’t have to go to the UK to find what’s hot in fashion. Sashay Around on Highway 107 North in Cashiers has the latest line of Wellies and Wellie Bobs, which guarantee happy feet in rain or snow. For the uninitiated, Wellies are cool polka-dot, stripe, and flower-print rubber boots you’ve probably seen strutting around town and country. Add to that Wellies’ line of sweats and vests in dazzling colors. If country club casual is more your style, check out Sashay’s full array of contemporary classics: blouses, shirts, pullovers, skirts, pants, dresses, rainwear, and more. Accessorize with beautiful scarves, handbags, and belts. There’s something for every taste from divine to sublime to glitzy and glam. And don’t forget wedding apparel from mother-of-the-bride to the bridal party.
Jonna McDowell of Spoiled Rotten in Town Square, Highlands, reiterates that comfort is the look and feel of the season. “We are all starting to feel that traveling in the US is going to be the best plan. There will be a lot of local travel maybe 3 to 5 hours from home and possibly overnight stays. Clothing will be comfortable and easy-care. People always enjoy brights in the spring and summer months with pinks and oranges being enduring favorites, and don’t forget your white pants.” They’re especially excited to be offering Pure clothing this year, a line that embodies comfort and style, and travels well.
A relaxing stop on any shopping excursion is The Brier Patch at 4186 Cashiers Road. Stepping into this oasis is a delight for the senses. This gift and home accessory store features a multitude of lamps for your every need; an array of beautiful pillows; hostess gifts of every imaginable kind; décor items; tabletop fountains; vases; silk flowers; and, plants and containers; and, fashion accessories. They also feature fine furniture pieces and original artwork by Jo Ann Williams Walker. To end your quintessential day of shopping, take a moment to visit their back porch and hear the soothing sounds of a tabletop fountain while enjoying an unexpected view of Shortoff Mountain.
Now in its 10th year, The Look Boutique in Cashiers at 137 Highway 107 North is infused with excitement around new designers as well as an expansion of existing lines from the designers that savvy Plateau Shoppers already know and love. You can find your very own “look” here or by visiting this darling white cottage with a picket fence. Inside, you’ll discover a beautiful collection of fashionable apparel, jewelry and accessories in this beautiful mountain resort area.
The Southern Way is a men’s and women’s southern casual clothing store, located at 338 Main Street in Highlands. You can count on friendly service and a knowledgeable staff, making for a fun, breezy shopping experience.
Just a little off the beaten path (in more ways than one), The Summer House at 2089 Dillard Road outside of Highlands has earned a national reputation for its home furnishings and accessories and insightful design services. That’s why you’ll find their touch in mountain getaways, and beach homes, and estates scattered across Wine Country. But here’s a bit of Insider Baseball known to only the savviest of shoppers — The Summer House Bed & Bath Shop offers a deeply sensuous collection of luxury linens, pajamas, nightshirts, robes and loungewear.
TJ Bailey’s is a destination boutique offering classic, curated style with exceptional customer service since 1985. Building lasting relationships of trust and a shared appreciation for impeccable style, this Plateau institution aims to empower its clients by dressing them for success. TJ Bailey likes to proclaim that it’s a family – it supports its clients, each other, and its communities. You find the same level of services and the same fashion sense at both locations – 343C Town Square on Main Street in Highlands; and 95 Highway 107 South in Cashiers.
Town and Country General Store is here to offer you just a little bit of everything: clothing, jewelry, home décor, candles, local jams and jellies, honey, sweet tea, coffee, fresh deli sandwiches as well as hot pressed Paninis. You’ll want to allow yourself some time to browse – at 14 Raggedy Lane in Cashiers.
Victoria’s Closet is something of a local legend for its eye-popping fashion surprises and its jaw-dropping prices. It’s a consignment shop, a fine consignment shop.
(Editor’s Note: Case in point, seven years ago, this writer was in the shop to pick up an ad for my boss.
Now if you know me, you know my fashion sense is on about the same level as a chimp. A fairly clever chimp, but still. So there I was, waiting, when my attention was captured by some sort of hat-thing that looked like it came out of an MGM musical from the 1940s.
Owner Kerry Stanger patiently explained to me that it was a “fascinator” and was a particular fashion choice of English women of the landed gentry. She said that the shop had placed it on the shelf for the low, low price of $8.
Eight bucks I can handle.
Well, next year Tricia and I were at High Tea at Selfridges in London and perched atop her head was that slightly silly fascinator.
And it blended right in!
We got a lot more than $8 worth of fun out of that fascinator!)
One of the newest businesses to join the upscale retail district in Highlands is South Florida-based Wish & Shoes, which opened its fifth store on Fourth Street in May. This unique boutique offers shoppers the utmost in personal service, at a level usually reserved for Rodeo Drive and 5th Avenue.
Owners Rachel Gottfried and Peter Mastrorio said they visited several towns and cities in search of a new location for the summer season, and couldn’t be happier with the cool mountain air.
What makes Wish & Shoes unique? After over 30 years in the retail clothing business, and with a demanding customer base, Rachel and Peter know what women want, and they and their associates go over and above to provide it. Wish & Shoes is located in the renovated, brightly lit, and inviting location at 211 South Fourth Street. The space is modern, elegant, and filled with stylish American and European designers offering head-to-toe fashion for women of all ages. You’ll discover lines you can’t find anywhere else in Highlands and right now is the time to shop for your fall and winter fashions with new merchandise arriving daily.
In the world of retail it’s becoming difficult to find a thriving business that has been family owned for generations. Wits’ End Shop has been both a Main Street fixture and a Highlands institution for over 80 years
“We’re known for our colorful prints, cashmere and jewelry, but more than that, we’ve become a truly intergenerational store. We have grandmothers and granddaughters shopping here at the same time,” says Manager Susan Young.
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