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From banking to boutiquing: Monkee's open new shop in St. Matthews
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Earlier this month, Monkee's, a high-end boutique based in North Carolina, opened its second store in Kentucky at 3624 Brownsboro Road. In an email Q & A interview with owner Sarah Woodsworth, who also owns the first store in Lexington, she talks about the process of setting up shop in the River City

How did you become a franchisee of Monkee's?

Sarah Woodsworth: I opened the Lexington store in 2011, and couldn't wait to expand to Louisville.

What did you do before becoming a franchisee?

Woodsworth: Before Monkee's, I taught high school English for two years, was a stay-at-home mom for a while, and then was the director of sales development for Matilda Jane Clothing.

Why Monkee's?

Woodsworth: I knew Monkee's carried a reputable name in the fashion industry, and many shoppers know about it from vacationing. I wanted to be part of something with a strong infrastructure, and to work with women who are knowledgeable and experienced in the world of retail.

What was the process behind selecting the location of your franchise?

Woodsworth: I knew I wanted to be in St. Matthews, and after speaking with some friends and my realtor, realized the [vacant] PNC Bank was the perfect location. Though it needed extensive work, I'm thrilled this is where I ended up.

What was the process for preparing the location for opening day and beyond?

Woodsworth: Oh, the list goes on and on. I basically had to gut the entire building, tear it down to a shell, and rebuild. The vault had to be taken out, walls re-drywalled, floors laid, all casework built. It was a lot of fun to design -- I knew I wanted something edgy, yet still very feminine.

What labels will your boutique have available?

Woodsworth: For clothing, we carry Elizabeth McKay, Britt Ryan, Bell by Alicia Bell, Leona, Ali Ro, Skirtin Around, LaRoque, Amanda Uprichard, Kirrabilla, Jude Conally, Minnie Rose, DL1961, Jade, and Joy Joy.

Regarding shoes, there's Frye, Kate Spade, Jack Rogers, Cole Haan, Isola, and Butter.

Finally, in accessories, we have Tom Ford, Tory Burch, Ray Ban, vintage Chanel, W&M, Loren Hope, and Sylvia Benson.

Any final words?

Woodsworth: Louisville truly has some of the best boutique shopping in Kentucky, but I feel that Monkee's has a different vision than any of the stores here. I'm hoping to bring some southern charm and style -- a true girly boutique shopping experience to the Derby City!

More information and hours of operation can be found by visiting Monkee's of Louisville's Facebook page.

Photos: Cameron Miquelon/Louisville.com.

Slideshow: 
Monkee's of Louisville owner Sarah Woodsworth talking with customers on opening day.
Accessories surrounded a seating space, filled with top high-end names.
Is it just me, or do you, too, hear Sam Elliot's voice when you get near a pair of Frye's?
This Chanel 2.55 handbag -- so named for its debut in February of 1955 -- will set you back around $3,300.
Baubles galore decorate this table.
Branded coffee mugs await to be filled.
The only banking to be done here will be on style.

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About Cameron Miquelon

Former fashion writer for Louisville.com, now contributing author for automotive industry blog The Truth About Cars. Born in Louisville, returned 29 years later, left for Seattle in 2013.

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