NORTH SWANZEY — A pair of boutiques — one offering plus-sized women’s clothing and the other apparel for young girls — will close at the end of September, according to owner Heidi Hurt.Hurt said in a news release that sales at Curvy Chic Boutique and Little Chic Boutique, which share a Monadnock Highway retail store, have “declined substantially” this year.The Swanzey resident said she’s also discontinuing the brands, which sell items from several manufacturers, to focus on her other businesses: The Purple Goat, which offers all-natural, handmade beauty products including soaps and body lotions, and Glitzy Dip, a line of nail dip powder for at-home manicures. Those businesses will return to a store near Frazier and Son Furniture on Old Homestead Highway (Route 32) in Swanzey, where they’d been previously, according to Hurt.
“We’re excited to get back to our quaint charming little shop and focus on building The Purple Goat and Glitzy Dip,” she said in the news release. “We want to thank the community for helping to support our business goals and for their patronage over the years.”Hurt, who also owns the software consulting firm Acuity Cloud Solutions, started Curvy Chic Boutique early last year as an online-only clothing brand but quickly suspended operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, she told The Sentinel on Thursday. The boutique reopened in January 2021 at its Monadnock Highway retail location, where she also launched Little Chic Boutique and moved her other businesses at that time.
“I heard a demand in the area from people who really wanted plus-sized clothing and boutique-style kids’ clothing,” she said, “something you couldn’t pick up at Walmart or Target.”Hurt said the brands’ sales have waned in recent months after a “really strong” start to the year, however, and she blamed large retailers and “the behemoth that is Amazon” for squeezing small businesses.“The consumer landscape has changed over the years and consumers look for convenience, speed and the lowest price,” she said in the news release. “This has made it difficult for small local retailers to compete.”All clothing at Curvy Chic Boutique and Little Chic Boutique is marked down, with sales up to 70 percent off, according to the release. The brands’ apparel can be purchased at their brick-and-mortar store or online at www.joyful-brands.com.