Boutique owners reveal their favorite spring trends

Store owners zero in on go-to items, dos and don'ts, and the hottest looks in their current inventory.

April 10, 2013|The Baltimore Sun

Spring is finally here in Baltimore, and local boutiques are filled to the brim with new clothing for this season. But when picking out new go-to pieces, it's easy to get lost in a sea of mint green, bold stripes and sequins. To get you started, we asked boutique owners about their top picks for spring — and the fashion dos and don'ts that everyone should know about.

Lisa Ponzoli, owner of Babe

1716 Aliceanna St., Fells Point


Favorite spring trends: "Sheer fabrics, easy bodies, florals, stripes, layering, skirts and the high-low hem are really strong."

Dos & don'ts: "There are still some girls out there who are shying away from the super-skinny-leg jean. Get with the program! It is more flattering (and more contemporary) than a basic bootleg jean, and it gives you way more options for tops and shoes."

Go-to item: "I am the denim jacket's biggest fan. It is perfect for the transitional seasons of spring and fall. Over a dress, it gives structure yet keeps you dressed weather-appropriate for chilly days and nights."

What's in the store: "We have picked up a few new lines we are really excited about: TBags Los Angeles, Tolani and Bardot are a few of our new favorites."

Priya Rayadurg, owner of Cloud 9 Clothing

1111 W. 36th St., Hampden


Additional stores in Canton, Towson and Rockville.

Favorite spring trends: "Color, color, color! From pale mint and rich royal blue to black and white graphic prints and bold stripes. Peek-a-boo cutouts in dresses and tops are a popular trend, as well as pantsuits and printed pants."

Dos & don'ts: "Do try at least one of the spring trends. Don't be afraid to try something different and new."

Go-to item: "A dress. From colorful solids to stripes and florals."

In the store: "We have brightly colored tops with peek-a-boo backs from Double Zero ($38) and a great peek-a-boo dress from BB Dakota ($92). We also have your spring staple dresses from Free People, Kersh, Angie and Double Zero ($55-$128)."

Lisa Schatz, owner of Cupcake

813 S. Broadway, Fells Point


Favorite spring trends: "Lots of color! Strong prints, high-low hems, cutouts and lace."

Go-to item: "The printed dress."

What's in the store: "We have a Parker silk and leather-trimmed maxi dress ($279) and an adorable Lavender Brown high-low tank top ($39)."

Lesley Jennings, co-owner of Doubledutch Boutique

3616 Falls Road, Hampden


Favorite spring trends: "Spring has always been synonymous with color, stripes and nautical themes. Doubledutch is guilty every season of overindulging in these, especially with stripes. But this year, a nice alternative to the horizontal is zig-zag and chevron stripes, as well as the vertical railroad. As for color, coral is still holding strong from last year but mint (or anything green really) is going to be strong — especially with accessories. Some other themes that we will carry are large floral and graphic prints on denim or chambray, as well as an animal image or two."

Dos & don'ts: "I've always encouraged our customers to wear what they feel comfortable in and what fits their personality. It truly doesn't matter what the fashion police think because whatever they say 'don't' for one season I guarantee will become a 'do' in a few years. A prime example — mixing patterns. For years, I've been told I can't wear that print with that print, and now that the big design houses are doing it, it's OK. As well as wearing leggings as pants — for years, that was a no-no, and now with all the graphic print leggings in season, these have become a must."

Go-to item: "Large graphic mod patterns and shift shapes of the '60s. Definitely patterns with large checks and polka dots, especially in black and white. You need something to balance out all those Cadbury egg colors!"

What's in the store: Zig-zag pattern dress by BB Dakota ($54.95), mint flats with bow on side by City Classified ($32.95) and large polka dot on chambray button-up by QSW ($62.95).

Marc Sklar and John Massey, co-owners of Gian Marco Menswear

517 N. Charles St., Mount Vernon


Favorite spring trends: "One of our go-to items is our travel blazer, an unlined hybrid jacket made in a cotton and nylon that repels rain. It is available in basic colors (ideal for every outfit), comes out of a suitcase unwrinkled (ideal for travel), features more pockets than a herd of kangaroos (ideal for security) and is made for us by Swiss Army-Victorinox. Our shirts, either Egyptian cottons or handkerchief linens, feature bold colors and sophisticated patterns. To the cognoscenti, they are always fashionable. In short, we are buying haute fashion (which lives forever) not style (which may have the life of a fruit fly)."

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