GG's Boutique Rounds Out Merle Norman Expansion in Downtown Farmington
The new store joins Merle Norman Cosmetics, Merle Norman Spa and Rebecca's Wigs in the Downtown Farmington Center.
Operated by Merle Norman owner Karen Gara, with partner Beth Gentile, the shop occupies the space where Gara established a spa and wig studio in 2011.
"Two years later, we outgrew it," she said, adding those services have been moved to a space that is also adjacent to Merle Norman, but on the south side of the building.
GG's shelves and racks are stocked with fashions and accessories that will appeal to women of all ages and all sizes, including career-wear and fun fashions, Gara said. She is especially proud of the shop's Little Black Dress corner, which features "after 5" fashions and jewelry.
The shop also carries gift items, like colorful coin purses, "Fuzzy Footies" and scented candles. Gara said she and Gentile will continue adding items based on customer feedback.
She hopes GG's Boutique will give shoppers another reason to come to downtown Farmington and patronize other boutique-style shops, like Clothes Encounters and Tre Sorelle.
With the salon and boutique, Merle Norman-related businesses now occupy 2,000 square feet of the strip mall on Farmington Road, between Grand River and Orchard Street. Gara has also split off her wig business, Rebecca's Wigs, and expanded the selection.
Providing wigs for cancer patients, she said, "is really where my passion is ... It's changed my life." Gara has also opened New Reflections Boutique, Services by Rebecca's Wigs, in the Botsford Cancer Center. Private rooms in the downtown Farmington salon include comfortable chairs for family and friends to provide support as clients have their consultations and fittings.
The salon offers a full range of services, with two nail technicians and three hair stylists. A massage therapist also works out of quiet, private rooms in the back. Next door, Merle Norman is getting back to its core make-up and skin care business.
Despite the whirlwind of activity, after 43 years in business, Gara said, "I don't have any fear. I think if you want it, you should go get it."
Learn more about GG's Boutique at ggsboutiquefarmington.com or on Facebook.