Online boutique Fox & Willow has put down roots in Toowoomba, encouraging locals to step out of their “fashion comfort zone”.

Business owner Kate Duncan said that when it comes to her own style, she describes herself as a bit of fashion gypsy, bohemian one day and designer the next. “I have an eclectic taste in fashion and I try to reflect that in my store,” she said.

“My style icon is definitely Sarah Jessica Parker, I just love the fashion icon she became in Sex And The City the glamorous, urban-chic fashionista that her character Carrie Bradshaw evolved into.”

Kate carefully curates her stock lists to feature Australian labels who specialise in an array of styles, from festival fashion through to couture.

Kate said, “it was important to me to support Australian designers and I wanted to push Toowoomba’s more conservative style by bringing in more coastal collections that hasn’t been seen this far north of Brisbane before. I know this region’s love of race day fashion so I have introduced a couple of high end fashion brands into my store that offer those one off special occasion pieces as well.”

Where many rural fashion boutiques begin with a store and transition online, Fox & Willow took an alternative approach.

“Initially I was only an online store, it was very important to me to find the perfect location and committing to a retail lease isn’t something to be taken lightly. I used this time to build my brand online and gain social media interest so once the right location came along it was an easy transition into a bricks and mortar store.”

Kate said that getting Toowoomba residents to embrace new styles and experiment with fashion has been both a challenge and a thrill.

“It [Toowoomba] is mostly conservative when it comes to style and fashion, and I encourage the customer to step out of their comfort zone and wear something different and sometimes a little more revealing.”

Kate was thrilled to receive such a positive response to the relaunch of her family business. “Toowoomba is a very friendly community and I have been welcomed as the refreshing change it needed.”

Fox & Willow Boutique can be found at Shop 17, Australia Arcade, 461 Ruthven Street, Toowoomba.

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