(Filed Under Retailer News). Q&A with Liliana Mann, president & key buyer of Linea Intima, an intimate apparel boutique chain with five stores throughout Toronto, Unionville and London, Ontario.
*Imi Mann is also president.
Primary square footage: 800
Typical square footage: 600
Year opened: 1997
A.T.P.: What makes your store special?
L.M.: Linea Intima has established a reputation for great bra-fitting combined with exceptional customer service. We carry the best brands in a very welcoming, fashionable atmosphere that the customers are attracted to. It also helps that we are the darling of the media community and I am often invited to speak on T.V. programs about the benefits of a professional bra fitting. I am a regular contributor on the very popular, lifestyle program, Steven & Chris, which airs nationally on the CBC network. Our window displays are changed often and they feature the most up-to-date product in both style and color.
A.T.P.: What brands are important in your store?
L.M.: Lingerie brands: Prima Donna; Marie Jo; Chantelle; L’aventure; Simone Pérèle; Empreinte; and Lejaby. In sleepwear: Carole Hochman; Eileen West; Betsey Johnson; Diamond Tea; DKNY; and Hanky Panky.
A.T.P.: What price range and size range do you carry?
L.M.: We carry sizes from 30 to 44 and cups from A to H. We are happy to accommodate all of these sizes. Prices are in the mid-to-upper price range.
A.T.P.: Who is your customer base made up of?
L.M.: Our target customer is primarily in the 30 to 65-year range, but we have many customers in their teens as well as in the 70-plus age range; essentially, any woman who appreciates the benefits and the fit of high-quality lingerie. We also go out of our way to make it a pleasure for men to shop for gifts for the women in their lives.
A.T.P.: What does the typical customer spend per visit to your store?
L.M.: The average sale in store is $350.
A.T.P.: What is your typical customer size?
L.M.: It is hard to determine our typical or average customer size as the female’s body is constantly changing. Breast size and shape fluctuates continually throughout a woman’s life for many reasons such as diet, weight change, exercise, medications, pregnancy or illness and therefore we cannot pinpoint an average size.
A.T.P.: What styles are popular among your customers?
L.M.: Customers gravitate toward color, so we carry styles in the latest fashion colors, which create an exciting visual presence in our stores. In foundations we have noticed that women are more in tune and comfortable with their bodies. We see more demand for less constructed molded styles and more demand for lacy, beautiful, feminine bras.
A.T.P.: What other information about your store would you like to share?
L.M.: Renowned for expert bra-fitting consultations and a selection of the most sought after brands from around the world, the company’s services include mastectomy fitting, free on-location group bra-fitting seminars, bridal registry, gift certificates, free gift wrapping, personal shopping and wardrobe consultation as well as free Bra Club membership.
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