Is the era of the boutique over? Many high-end fashion lines have been struggling with decreased sales and the small boutiques that offered expensive clothing and personal service are finding their business greatly diminished during this recession as well. The Washington Post reports
that after 30 years Harriet Kassman's eponymous boutique
is closing its doors. Harriet Kassman has been a Washington D.C. institution for the city's most influential and wealthy women. Kassman's boutique offered more than just beautiful clothing, her boutique is famous for personal service and the relationships cultivated over years of buying. Kassman's specialties lay in expensive suits for those who work on Capitol Hill as well as gowns suitable for Washington D.C.'s many galas and formal events. But as budgets have gotten smaller, galas are less frequent and the need for a new gown for each one has become an extravagance rather than a necessity.
The Washington Post article is full of plaudits for Kassman's store and the special place it represented in the lives of many women. Kassman is currently holding a retirement sale but is still holding out hope that someone else might want to come along and buy the boutique and keep it open. She is keeping the bridal portion of the store open until all existing orders have been completed.