THIS RICHMONDTOWN BOUTIQUE OFFERS A RANGE OF STUNNING FEMININE APPAREL, AND A WEALTH OF EXPERIENCE BY JESSICA JONES GORMAN PHOTOS
BY AMANDA DOMENECH
The vibe at Cazabel Boutique in Richmond town can be best described as boho, a word defined by Webster’s as “socially unconventional in a way regarded as characteristic of creative artists.” For example, interiors here are marked by reclaimed lumber covering the wall and counters, and old chicken feeders serve as light fixtures. And the clothes? They have a hippie, bohemian influence of their own.
“I’ve always loved this style soft, free flowing, and extremely feminine,” noted Caryann Concilio, Cazabel’s owner. “So I decided to bring the kind of fashion I wear and love to Staten Island shoppers.”
Concilio, who also owns Bamboo Salon, which is adjacent to Cazabel, thought the shop would be a good fit in this Richmond Road strip mall.
“I thought it would be a great addition, because when women come in to Bamboo to have their hair done, we’re inevitably also talking about clothes and fashion,” she said. “Plus there’s a nail salon next door, as well as Mark’s Bake Shoppe. I thought a little neighborhood boutique would be the perfect fit, making this plaza a little destination: Get your hair and nails done, have a muffin and a cup of coffee, and do a little shopping…all in one trip.”
The store, she explained, is focused on shoppers who are searching for something unique—young women who don’t want to show up at an event in the same blouse or dress that everyone else is wearing.
“I only carry three of each item I sell, so there’s a very small chance that someone else will be wearing your look,” Concilio said. “And I try to keep my price points reasonable, $100 and under, so that a complete outfit is affordable for just about all of my shoppers.”
Blousy tops are the boutique’s specialty, but Cazabel has also become a go to destination for fun, flirty special occasion dresses.
“We sell jeans, too, but we really pride ourselves on cute, exclusive tops you can’t find anywhere else…not even online,” she observed.
Casilio, who has successfully operated her hair salon for 16 years, launched Cazabel with the help of her daughters, Amanda Intoccia and Allie Messina.
“Without them, this business would not exist,” she said.
“Launching the salon was not an easy task, but I had great support from my family and worked hard to make it happen. And three years ago, Amanda and Allie were instrumental in getting Cazabel off the ground. That support is so valuable when you’re starting your own business.” In part, that’s why Concilio launched a “women in business” support service this past spring, offering space in her store to young women who are trying to create their own brands.
“On Saturdays I allow small, local online businesses to set up a table, selling products like soap, candles, even bathing suits,” she said. “It helps them promote their work and they earn some sales, which is a big deal when you’re first starting out. Any kind of exposure is huge.”
To promote her store, Concilio relies heavily on social media, posting out fits daily to keep shoppers aware of new finds.
“I visit all of the trade shows at the Javits Center and scope out all the latest offerings from brands I know and love,” she said. “When the clothes arrive, I’ll put together an outfit and post it on Instagram. People instantly call to reserve their size.”
Inspired by that social media success, Concilio hopes to launch an online branch of the store in the future, selling wares to customers all over the world.
“I love this business,” she concluded. “And I hope to continue to grow it in the future.”
3481 Richmond Road / 718.351.3330