Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Stepping out of Macy’s: Walla Walla boutiques and clothing stores

Within the Walla Walla area, a menagerie of boutiques and clothing stores offer a diverse set of fashionable options that appeal to the variety of Whitman student styles and budgets. Boutiques such as Forward, Studio Opal and Hidden Treasures, a consignment store, provide unique and high quality  garments not found at department stores.


This boutique, located at 126 E. Main Street is owned by Walla Walla local Dana Budden. Budden bought the store in December 2009 from another local who originally sold her clothing at the farmer’s market. Budden makes the jewelry and belts found in-store, while the clothing is

chosen and bought by Budden at markets in Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

Lori Larson, an employee of Forward, has said that Budden wants for there to be a lot of denim options for both men and women. There are many different denim lines at a  wide price range that is affordable for  most Whitman students. Besides denim, the store sells a lot of unique blouses and  graphic  t-shirts.

While the demographic for Forward consists of a lot of out-of-towners and local regulars, according to Larson, students will also enjoy the range in clothing and accessories.

Studio Opal

Studio Opal, located on the corner of Main Street and Spokane Street, is owned by Amy Glase and Kathy Nelson. The boutique features women’s clothing designers from all around the world, and the selection of clothing displayed in the store is a combination of the personal styles of the owners.

Studio Opal's "Just for Him" table. Photo Credit: Kendra Klag

Glase’s style has a Scandinavian yet whimsical aesthetic. The clothing colors and style are reflected and complimented by the paintings on display, which she makes in her in-store studio.

Manager of Studio Opal Sarari Hutson gives a detailed account of the by hand embroidery on this dress. Photo Credit: Kendra Klag

Glase favors designers such as Odd Molly, Wildfox Couture and shoe designer Swedish Hasbeens. The Odd Molly line primarily consists of   kitschy prints alongside minimally-colored tops and dresses. In comparison, Wildfox Couture consists of graphic T-shirts that have an vintage-inspired, L.A. style.

Nelson creates one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces inspired by the natural elements of stone and rock. The styles purchased to be sold by Nelson are very comfortable and feature soft, comfortable items such as hoodies and pants, as well as menswear-inspired pieces such as suit jackets and flannels. Although she favors lesser-known designers such as CP Shades and Kara-Line, she is a fan of the ever-popular TOMS Shoes in the style of sneakers and flats.

In addition to clothing, Studio Opal sells other novelties such as candles, books, belts, tops, purses and other housewares.

Hidden Treasures

Hidden Treasures is a consignment store owned by Stacy Moeller.  In the  consignment process, a person sells his or her clothes for either 40 percent cash back or 45 percent store credit. Therefore, the prices are slightly higher than Goodwill but much better quality.

The store features some current fashion trends, but most of the clothing are of 90s to early 2000s in style. There is a wide range of outerwear available such as cardigans,  wool jackets and fur coats. Formal wear, prom dresses and workout clothes are also sold.

Accessories such as belts, purses, jewelry and scarves, which offer a quirky twist to an outfit,  can be  found here as well. The store  sells many different brands of jeans, tops and other outerwear in all sizes. Hidden Treasures sells high quality clothes for any type of style at discount prices. The store is located on 104 E. Main Street.

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