Tag Archive | "Collette Designer Consignment"

The Changing Face of Main Street, Sag Harbor

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One of the things North Haven artist April Gornik loves most about coming into Sag Harbor Village is the smell of roasting coffee beans emanating from Java Nation, a veritable Sag Harbor institution tucked into the Shopping Cove in the heart of the business district.

For 17 years patrons have enjoyed Cheryl and Andres Bedini’s coffee shop, where beans are roasted fresh every day. While tucking into copies of local newspapers and The New York Times, customers would often be treated to the debates of die-hard patrons loudly discussing the news of the world and the Village of Sag Harbor while sucking down their third or fourth cup of coffee.

However, after January 31, Java Nation customers will no longer be able to enjoy their coffee while sitting on one of the café’s stools or in its iconic window seat. On Tuesday, Andres confirmed that while he was in negotiation to renew his lease on the space, property owner Bruce Slovin informed him that Tisha Collette, of Collette Designer Consignment, was given a lease for the space.

Bedini said he was told Collette would help create “a new upscale environment,” and had agreed to fund an extensive renovation and pay more in terms of rent.

Bedini was told he would need to leave as his lease expires on February 1. He said he is committed to reopening Java Nation in Sag Harbor, and hopes to find his new location on Main Street before his lease is up in order to have a seamless transition.

“I don’t want to close for even a day,” said Bedini on Tuesday.

However, he added that he may have to roast his coffee off-site, which means the days of Sag Harbor smelling of roasted beans are likely over.

On Monday, Collette said she plans to renovate the space — “a full gutting,” she said — in February and reopen in March. In addition to an espresso bar, Collette said she will offer a selection of teas, a large assortment of pastries as well as salads and soups created off-site.

The change is one several taking place in Sag Harbor’s business district, which Bedini noted has more shuttered stores than he has seen in 17 years of business in the village.

The building many locals call “Fort Apache,” including the former Cigar Bar, is mostly empty. There are several spaces also available on Route 114, as well as on Madison Street. The Grenning Gallery building on Washington Street is also for sale, and BikeHampton recently lost their Main Street space.

At the end of the summer, the Whalers Cleaners & Tailors closed after being open since 1962. Taken over by Reno Salsedo in 1994, the business has since had a “for rent” sign in the window with a Manhattan number for interested parties.

His brother, Dan Salsedo operated the Ice Cream Club and Vincenzo’s Pizza in the same building, and also shuttered his doors this fall.

On Monday, Salsedo said he closed because the rent was too expensive, and after 14 years of business he was ready to move on.

“I got out while the getting was good,” he said.

Salsedo was fortunate in that he was able to sell the remainder of his lease through local commercial property owner Hal Zwick, who is also the director of commercial real estate for Devlin McNiff.

Zwick said he expected to close on that lease this week, and that as soon as the property became available there was interest.

“There are people looking to do business in Sag Harbor,” said Zwick.

He added that with the recession ending, and commercial real estate too expensive in East Hampton Village, many clients are looking to Sag Harbor or Bridgehampton to set up shop.

Zwick acknowledged that the price of doing business in Sag Harbor is getting more expensive.

“You have a situation where you are dependent on your landlord,” he said. “They are often willing to extend your lease, but the rents are going up and that is something local businesses will have to watch. It is supply and demand. I got 50 calls for Danny’s place when it closed.”

Zwick said he does not see Sag Harbor Village morphing into another East Hampton Village.

“I don’t think we will find a Tiffany’s here, but we will see some of the smaller downtown shops from Manhattan coming to Sag Harbor when they want to open a shop in the Hamptons,” he said.

On Wednesday, Save Sag Harbor board member Jane Young said the organization was convening a meeting after the holidays to discuss the changes happening in downtown Sag Harbor.

“We are aware of what is going on and are brainstorming, but this is a complex problem,” she said.

For a local businessman like Salsedo, the writing is already on the wall.

“Without a doubt, Sag Harbor is changing and it’s inevitable,” he said. “I think eventually it will be just like East Hampton.”

Collette Designer Consignment Expands

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It’s Carrie Bradshaw’s dream come true, and it has found an ever expanding home on the East End.

Just 10 years after Tisha Collette founded the luxury consignment boutique, Colette Designer Clothing and Home Consignment in Southampton, the business has expanded to include two locations in Southampton, as well as a store in East Hampton and a Sag Harbor boutique on the verge of completing a Main Street expansion in the next month.

Adjacent to Collette’s current 78 Main Street address, the windows are clad with brown paper as the boutique finishes its expansion; but as shoppers know, inside Collette Designer Consignment, the last thing patrons will find is fashion easy to throw away. Rather, it is a Mecca of Chanel, Zac Posen, Magaschoni, Gucci, Valentino and other lauded designer’s work, from handbags to shoes to one-of-a-kind jackets and dresses – all at a 30 to 40 percent discount off the retail price because of the store’s consignment philosophy.

Consignments differ from sales at a thrift-clothing store, in that patrons don’t sell their clothing to the retailer, but give their goods to the retailers and are paid when their goods sell. Designer consignments like Collette, in particular, only accept items in perfect condition.

Tisha Collette’s interest in the business was born in California, where she grew up and explored designer consignment shops along the West Coast before moving to New York City to model professionally at 19.

After moving to Southampton, Collette said she felt their was a niche to be explored in designer consignment – particularly in clothing, but also in home furnishings – and opened her first Jobs Lane, Southampton store in 2000.

“I always felt there was a lot of excess,” she said this week. “Women shop a lot. My friends and I always have extra clothes and I thought there was never a place I really wanted to shop for second hand clothing.”

Moreover, Collette felt there was not a place where the savvy shopper could find designer goods in a designer atmosphere.

Over the years, Collette said the business has thrived due to her clientele, who loyally consign and shop at her retail locations, and make up a cross-section of women on the East End, from mothers to professionals, from the window shopper whose eye catches a desired Chanel bag to dealers who come to the stores to do business.

Many of the women who clean out their closets to ready for a new season with the aid of Collette gain extra income, but also many give to charity, she said this week, as well as use the profit in trade at the store.

The items at Collette retail for 30 to 40 percent less than their original price tag. This week, at the Sag Harbor branch, shoppers can find the Chanel bronze metallic tote for $3,195, down from $4,200 retail. The store, rich in Chanel bags, also currently carries Chanel’s black and white tweed coat, a fashion classic, for $1,800, but also has lower price points like a deep blue Moschino sundress with bow for $365 and a Zac Posen red stretch dress for $695.

“Sag Harbor is an interesting village,” said Collette of her reasons to expand to the village. “I was nervous, but there were not that many places to shop in Sag Harbor. And the clients love it. They are into the secondhand thing and they are an understated clientele – they are not flashy about their money, but at the same time they can afford to shop here.”

Deciding to expand into the former Simpatico shoe store, which is combining with Illusions jewelry store on Main Street, was simply choosing to not let an opportunity pass her by.

Similarly, Collette noted many of her clients are offered a deal at her boutiques difficult to find elsewhere – coveted and often original or discontinued designer goods at sometimes half the retail price.

Louise Mayer, who works at all Collette boutiques, noted it is that uniqueness that keeps shoppers coming back.

“You know not everyone is going to have it,” she said. “It’s often no longer in circulation. Some of the Chanel is more valuable now than it was because it is no longer available.”

“This is such a good collection,” squealed a customer, Tyra, on Tuesday. “It’s so much fun to shop here. I am about to catch a flight to L.A., but I just had to come back here.”

Collette Designer Consignment is located in Sag Harbor at 78 Main Street. For more information call 725-9300, or for more information on other retail locations, visit www.colletteconsignment.com.