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First News Summer 2009

Day Dreaming

   Once a dream plants itself in your subconscious, it will stay there until you put that dream into action or replace it with something else. Such was the case for the beginning of Bella Bella Boutique in Raton, New Mexico. When Mariah Shields was in 7th grade, she had a dream, which turned into a vision of some day owning a boutique. For the next 12 years, she held onto the mental picture of what she would like her store to look like, and what she wanted to sell in this business. Almost four years ago, she and her two children arrived in Raton from North Carolina to live near her parents, Lee and Connie Shields, and her sister and family Maegan Shields and Scott Weese. Once Mariah and her children got settled, she told Maegan and mom that it was time to start the business. The three women looked for several months for the right place to house the boutique; one that was not too big and that was in a great location. They finally found the right spot when they were shown the Sloan Building at the corner of Cook Avenue and South First Street. The street already had several retail shops and neighbors were excited to have this boutique taking up residence on the corner of the block. They had to choose a name, so they each suggested one, then took a vote from family and friends, "Bella Bella" won.

   After hours and hours of dreaming, planning and working till all hours of the night, Bella Bella Boutique finally opened on September 9, 2006. The store carries fine women's clothing, jewelry, purses, and scarves. Bella Bella carries several lines of clothing; the women have dropped merchandise lines that didn't fit right or wear well. Every season they try to bring in one new label.

   A fashion label that the store started with and still carries is Liz Claiborne, including its purses and jewelry. One of the founding principles is that the girls will not order more than four of any one item; they want the customers to be unique in their clothing. The same with the jewelry, usually there is just one style of necklace, earrings or bracelet so that when a lady sits down next to someone at a ball game or in church they do not have the same necklace or bracelet on. The Shields' customer base are women that are very stylish, discerning, and quite selective about their clothing. The women that shop Bella Bella are all ages and many different walks of life. What they like about the boutique is that the styles fit almost everyone and there is something to fit all shapes. For those ladies looking for fine clothing, unique jewelry and great customer service, visit Bella Bella Boutique.

Bella Bella Boutique
144 S. First Street
Raton, NM 87740
(575) 455-2051


Newsletter photography by Michael Babnick Photography

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