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FAIRFIELD — Sarah Thurston noticed her daughter and her friends were struggling to shop for clothes that offered the styles or prices they needed, so she decided to take matters into her own hands.

Thurston said she wanted to create a space where mothers and daughters could shop together for quality clothing products and jewelry for an affordable price point.

So she opened Trumpet, a boutique selling fashion items for teens and adults, in Southport last month on 167 Old Post Road where customers can find a spread of selections ranging from crop and tank tops to an array of women’s dresses. 

“There’s places in town where everything is $500 and above, and it’s just intimidating,” she said. “I think it really intimidates people when the price point is that high. And I wanted something that’s approachable and livable that you could come in and get a few dresses and not feel like you just bought your one dress for the month.”

Thurston said Trumpet’s inventory includes brands KatieJ NYC, Blanco by Nature, ELAN, French Connection and Loveshack Fancy with prices that dip below $35 for tank-tops and T-shirts and reach as high as $800 for luxury dresses. She said “almost every item” of teen clothing is less than $100, but women will have more of a “spread” of prices. 

She said some of the most popular items for teens include crop tops, skirts, shirt sets, gym shorts, sweatpants, sundresses and homecoming dresses. 

Thurston said she would typically go to Westport or Greenwich to shop local for women’s clothes, so she wanted to bring that option to Southport, where she positioned the store alongside Tusk Home + Design — an interior design store that she also owns on the lot.

“Everyone’s so excited when they come in,” manager Gabby Miller said. “They’re like ‘I haven’t seen this, I haven’t seen this, I haven’t seen these products, I haven’t seen these clothes before in other places around.'”

Thurston said she decided to open a fashion business in May and took to her first shopping spree to stock the store in June, heading down to Atlanta for an apparel show featuring about 1,200 vendors. She said she spent about 12 hours picking out items for her store across 10 floors and plans to embark to more shows, including those in New York City, Las Vegas, Miami and Los Angeles, to pick up more products for her store.

She said Trumpet’s space previously housed the furniture she sold through Tusk Home + Design, so she moved those items into an adjacent two-story barn on the property, which she also leases and will now fully contain her other business. 

Trumpet has hired eight staff members — the same number who work at Tusk Home + Design. She said Trumpet’s staffing allows her to allocate about 70 percent of her time to her home and design business.

“I have really good people who work for me,” Thurston said. “That’s the only way I do it.”

Thurston and Miller said Trumpet benefits from its location on Old Post Road with local traffic coming from Artisan Southport, Gray Goose and Equinox, as well as its close vicinity to Southport Park across the street.

She said Trumpet will throw a party Wednesday in its parking lot with a DJ, food truck, flower truck, photographer and candy bar open to the public — an expansion on the annual celebration Tusk Home + Design typically throws, now catering to youth for the first time. She said other local businesses in the area have asked to collaborate with Trumpet for other events in the future. 

The boutique has taken to Instagram and TikTok to tease the stylish looks curious shoppers can find on display at Trumpet, launching the natural cycle of social media engagement and enthusiasm from customers in town.

“First day of school, moms are coming up and like ‘Oh, so many Trumpet outfits at the first day of school,’ especially the middle school girls, and high school, but really have just posted a ton of stuff,” Miller said. 

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