PUBLISHED JUNE 30, 2016
By LISA STARK
Wee Boutique in Apollo Beach will celebrate its recent renovation and expansion with a ribbon-cutting and re-opening celebration Friday, July 1, at 11:30 a.m., featuring free Kona Ice refreshments, door prizes, kids activities and fun for the whole family.
“Don’t let the name fool you — it’s not little anymore,” said Wee Boutique owner, Mandy Cassiano, who opened the children’s consignment shop in November 2013. Cassiano was recently able to secure the neighboring unit, which added 1,800 square feet to her already established 1,400-square-foot storefront.
Located on U.S. 41 in Apollo Beach in the Winn Dixie Plaza, the boutique sells children’s clothes, shoes, books, toys and furniture. Decorated with hand-painted murals and a colorful carnival theme, the shop has a fun, festive feeling that invites people to stop and shop at their leisure.
Since its opening, Wee Boutique has become well known to families in the area, with their selection of strollers, car seats, cribs, changing tables, toddler beds, high chairs, pack ‘n’ plays, bouncers, activity centers, diaper bags and more. Shoppers at the boutique can find plenty of like-new clothes for infants and children, which now includes a newly expanded “tween” section offering sizes up to kids 16 and small juniors. The additional square footage provides space to accept and sort more consignment items and larger pieces of furniture as well.
Cassiano lives in Apollo Beach with her husband, Eric, and two children, Issac and Mercy. After the birth of her daughter in 2013, Cassiano opened Wee Boutique to fill what she felt was a need in the community for clean, quality baby items.
Suddenly, she was inundated with creative moms making their own items to sell.
“I knew I wanted to offer locally-made baby items,” said Cassiano. “But I never imagined meeting so many independent, creative entrepreneurs.”
Today, Cassiano features an impressive array of handmade items in her store, crafted by a variety of local vendors. Her shelves are lined with one-of-a-kind skirts and dresses, glittery hair bows, pacifier clips, personalized embroidered burp cloths and teething blankets, as well as “dress-up” clothes to delight any child — tutus, costumes and super-hero capes.
Also on display in the store is everything a parent needs for setting up baby’s room, including well-cared for cribs, changing tables, rocking chairs and toddler beds.
“Believe it or not, about half of our customers are grandparents,” said Cassiano. “Grandmas like to have their house ready for the kids when they come over to visit.”
Cassiano currently has over 200 consignors who bring in their children’s outgrown clothes and toys.
“Consigners, for the most part, make more money than having a yard sale — without all the hassle,” she said.
Cassiano has also come up with another valuable service to offer her customers, which she calls “Wee-Bay.” A way of helping customers sell children’s collector’s toys and dolls on eBay. “Not everyone has the time or know-how to sell items on eBay. We can help customers put a value on their items and post them to sell.”
Wee Boutique’s reopening on July 1 is open to the public and will feature special sales on their newly expanded “tween” section. Anyone having a baby will receive special discounts off the new maternity rack as well.
Wee Boutique is at 6122 N. U.S. 41 in Apollo Beach. For more information, visit www.Wee-Boutique.com, or call 813- 645-4569.