Featuring ~ Lille Boutique
Submitted by Sarah Wizemann, owner of Lille Boutique Portland, Oregon
I opened Lille a little over 6 years ago after moving to Portland from New York and not finding any lingerie store that catered to my aesthetic sensibilities. I was looking for some place tasteful, elegant, fashion-forward yet simultaneously vintage-inspired, with a good selection of natural fibers and non-padded options that offered a range of prices, and that just didn’t exist here (or anywhere really), so I decided to fill that niche.
I had always been fond of fine lingerie and particular about construction, owing to the fact that my mother was a seamstress and designer who made all the costumes for my dance company (I studied ballet, modern, tap, jazz, etc. for nearly 20 years before retiring after college due to injuries.) She taught me how to sew, so I have a special appreciation for beautifully constructed garments, and I really love when fine techniques like French Seams, Pintucks, Box Pleats, etc., find their way into the lingerie world.
I think my years as a dancer put me so in tune with fit, since leotards epitomize the form follows function rule–I’m very pragmatic in that sense and I tend to be hyper-critical of garments with superfluous design elements. I am passionate about the many young female designers who are taking the lingerie industry by storm, creating garments that are truly made with modern women’s needs in mind. We support many independent designers who manufacture locally, employing ethical business practices and treading lightly on the environment.
The store has evolved beyond lingerie, hosiery and loungewear to include swimwear, shoes, jewelry and a small selection of ready-to-wear, and we now have 2 Portland locations with future expansion on the horizon. I love my customers because they care about the story behind the brand, not just the fashion. And I love my job, because it allows me to wear so many different hats in the varied day-to-day hustle and bustle of owning and promoting my own brand identity: buyer, occasional designer, stylist, producer, director, social media marketer, writer, confidant, mentor, and on and on!
Lille Boutique is located at 1007 E. Burnside & 1126 SW Adler in Portland, Oregon