TLC For Kauai’s Fashionistas

Brenda Vidinha
TLC Consignment Boutique

Please tell us about your business. We are a consignment boutique located in Kapaa. We are a totally go-green recycling store and take your fairly new, slightly used household and clothing items that you’ve cherished and worn and no longer have the want or need to wear or use. You bring them here and we sell it for you, so someone else can enjoy your same treasure and pleasure.

What does TLC stand for? The Ladies Club.

What does the name mean? In 1994, two women who were friends that had moved here from the Mainland — Terri Waller and Lisa Breen — started the business by having closet swaps, and they called it The Ladies Club. They got together with their girlfriends and friends, and everyone brought whatever they would clean out of their closets to a swap party that they took turns hosting. The group became so large because everyone kept telling their friends, so they decided to open a boutique, where people could come and do their thing at the shop instead. As the store grew, others came on board, including myself.

How did you get started in the business? I started out by helping Terri do alterations at the store because I love to sew. Then it grew into working part time and then putting my all into it and watching the store grow over the years.

Where were you born and what high school did you graduate from? I grew up on Kauai and went to Kapaa High School.

Why do you do what you do? I love fashion. I love keeping up with the new trends, the new styles, the new labels. And I also love watching my clients and their children grow. We’ve had fabulous women come through the store who started out as shoppers, became clients and then became friends.

What sets your business apart from others? We have a lot of one-of-a-kind clothing and items you wouldn’t find at other stores around the island. Some of our clients don’t live on the island, so they mail their items here to sell.

What are some examples of items you sell? We carry a wide variety of clothes, from everyday pieces to specific brands such as Trina Turk, all the very exquisite labels. They’re expensive in other stores, but we sell them for 50-90 percent less.

Do you sell any new items? Yes. We have clients who own their own retail stores who find us as a good way to move some of the items they don’t sell. So when you see duplicates of something, they are coming from retail stores and they are brand new, with labels and tags still on them.

What is the secret to long-term business success on Kauai? Keeping up with the trends and making people feel welcome when they walk through the door.

Why did you recently change locations? This is actually our third location. We started on Kuhio Highway near the swimming pool and Kapaa Neighborhood Center. We were there for 17 years. We decided to move to a new location three-and-a-half years ago, but parking was limited, so it was time to move again and grow. We just opened for business in our new location behind Wahoo Seafood Grill and Bar in Royal Coconut Plaza. Now we have more parking and a bigger space.

What are some of your plans for the future? As soon as we Brenda Vidinha looks at an old newspaper article about the store’s opening in 1994

The shop’s eclectic offerings include gently used household items get set up here completely, we will be taking on a junior and preteen line, so we can get that age group interested in recycling and turning their closets.

What’s the most rewarding aspect of this business? The happy smiles and the return customers.

Open Monday through Friday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., and Saturday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

4-733 Kuhio Hwy., #5, Kapaa 822-0004