Willow, an upmarket store in Windermere Centre in Morningside, is drawing a wider, more fashion-friendly clientele because of the stylish offerings.
How did your business start?
Our business, Collins Collection, was established in 1996 as a wholesale supplier of ladieswear to independent boutiques throughout South Africa. Seeing a gap in the market for classic, locally made apparel, we opened our own retail outlet, Willow, in June 2015. We stock our own wholesale range, as well as ranges from other local designers.
Our factory is situated in Station Drive, so the fact that Windermere Centre is so close to our production centre was a big drawcard. In addition, we liked the changes and upgrades that were taking place at that centre, and felt we’d like to be a part of its rejuvenation.
How did you find your premises?
We saw vacant premises next door to the new Woolworths Food store in the centre, and felt this would be an excellent position for our store.
Why are the premises ideally suited to your business?
Being conveniently located next door to a drawcard like Woolworths is ideal, because the foot traffic is reasonably high. Women like to multitask, so combining grocery shopping and some retail therapy is a winning combination!
Woolworths Food store, Pharmacare pharmacy and Anthology.
What are the shop rental/sales prices like in this area?
We find them quite competitive.
What is your shop footprint?
On average, 50 people per day.
Do you have any expansion plans?
Yes, we definitely plan to open other branches of Willow in the near future.
Do you operate online as well?
We offer some of our products online via our Facebook page (facebook.com/willowdurban), and customers can view our current wholesale range online via our website.
What’s your most popular item?
It varies from season to season – currently our beautiful poncho capes have been very popular, as well as our leather sandals, and in summer our rayon shift dresses.
031 303 1425
Words: Anne Schauffer | Images: Supplied