STYLISH PITTSBURGH // MEET BRIANNE, OWNER OF NO.14 BOUTIQUE

No.14 Boutique is in one of my favorite neighborhoods in Pittsburgh – Lawrenceville.  I love this area.  It has a fantastic selection of independent boutiques, cafes, bars and restaurants, and has such a warm and welcoming vibe.  If you talk to anyone who lives or works here you’ll find they all say the same thing, it’s this community spirit that they love the most!

As soon as you step through the doors of No.14 Boutique you’re transported to a calm and tranquil place.  It feels like you’ve been welcomed into someone’s home.  The décor is beautiful, the owner Brianne clearly has an eye for interiors!  The space is chic, quirky, light and spacious, and it’s brimming with Brianne’s personality.    Brianne was a pleasure to meet and chat to, we talked about her love of buying (it’s her favorite part of the business), to what it’s like running a business with her Mum (she wouldn’t choose anyone else!).

The collections she carry’s fit into the space perfectly, they too are chic and a little quirky.  This is feminine clothing for the confident women, who knows her style and wants to stand out from the crowd.  There’s a mix of striking unstructured dresses, bold prints, lace, and sheer fabrics (I fell for the cropped tops she has in for Fall). Oh and she sells beautiful things for the home too, so you can add a dash of the stores chicness to your own abode.

It really was a pleasure to meet Brianne, she is one ambitious lady!  Scroll down and read our interview to find out more about her story and passion for the business.

How long has No.14 boutique been open and what inspired you to start the business?

We opened in October, October 14th (duh!). So, we’ve been open almost 9 months. I was inspired to open the business by so many different things.  I used to work at Nordstrom seasonally while I was in college, and my favorite part about it was the display of the clothing and getting to interact with so many different people.  I am constantly inspired by beautiful things and beautiful people.  I feel like a LOT of stores (especially corporate retailers) get intimidated to make large buys on trendy product and I’ve never understood that.  I wanted to create an environment that encouraged women to be out there, on trend, and give them the ability to go to a wedding and not have the same exact dress as everybody else.

The boutique has such a strong identity that’s brimming with chic clothing and beautiful furniture, it has a bit of a French feel!  Where do you get your inspiration from for the décor and the collections you carry?

Well thank you, that’s such a compliment! I get inspiration from everything! Like any other girl, I absolutely resort to Pinterest when in need of a creative boost. But, as far as the actual space, I am lucky in that my parents own the building we are in. So, throughout the renovation process, we were truly able to do exactly what we wanted with it, like putting the compliments on the floors & having a bike sink! I cannot take all of the credit though, I own the business with my mother. I would be hesitant to do something bold (like put flawless darling into the floor) and she’d convince me into it immediately. She’s definitely opened me up to being more risky with the interior. As far as the feel of the space, we wanted to empower women.  It’s really easy for women to get caught up in drama & pettiness and I truly hate when women cannot support other women. Being a girl is SO fun, so we wanted to celebrate that in our space.

You’re clearly a huge fan of Pittsburgh and Lawrenceville, what do you think makes it a great city to live in?

HA! Gosh, my grandfather is smiling from the grave right now.  I was born in raised in Pittsburgh.  Though I went to college in North Carolina, Pittsburgh is always home.  Contrary to what one would think, I am a huge sports fan, football & hockey games complete the perfect weekend to me.  Being from Pittsburgh gives you that sense of pride because there is NO other city with this type of spirit and support for their team.  Pittsburgh is full of proud people.  Not to mention, it’s the type of city where everybody knows each other, which gives you a huge sense of community in a bigger environment. As far as Lawrenceville goes, we couldn’t have picked a better place to be. The neighborhood has been so kind to us.  We love the shop owners around us and our customers have become our friends.  It is thriving with young people who are eager to be out exploring their neighborhood & find the newest “it” place to be.  New things are constantly popping up, it’s inspiring!  Every time a new business comes in, whether it’s a restaurant, store, tattoo parlor, barber shop etc- the entire community will have tried it in 3 weeks time. Everyone is beyond supportive, we couldn’t be happier here!

What do you think about Pittsburgh’s style, and how would you describe it?

Listen, Pittsburgh gets a REALLY bad wrap for it’s lack of style. And while yes, the “game day casual” look can be sported by 98% of the people on Penn Avenue on a Steeler Sunday, that’s just a tribute to my above comment that- us yinzers love our sports teams.  But truly, this city is booming with people who are VERY stylish.  When we went on our first buying trip, we were hesitant that our style wouldn’t be perceived well in Pittsburgh, we are more feminine and Lawrenceville has a reputation for being hipster.  So we bought styles we loved, and styles we thought our “hipster” clients would love.  I’ll be the first to say – stereotypes are for losers! The product we believed in sold the best, by a long shot.  We vowed to only buy product that was “us” from there on out & it’s worked thus far.

How about your own style? Describe your personal style and why it works for you?

I feel like I have two different identities when it comes to style. If I’m going to work or headed out to eat, etc, I gravitate toward statement pieces.  I definitely love to get dolled up, and my job is a lot of playing dress up, so it works.  But, my “off duty” look is completely opposite.  My typical day off is spent catching up on emails and making buys for the upcoming seasons.  I go grab a coffee & run errands.  Those days, being completely comfortable is vital and my go to’s are usually converse, cutoff jean shorts & a ball cap.

What or who inspires your style?

My two style icons are Olivia Palermo & Victoria Beckham.  I also follow a lot of bloggers and look to them for style inspiration- they can make the most simple of outfits look so chic.

What’s your most treasured item in your closet?

This past February, my grandmother gave me one of her vintage hermes scarves for my birthday. She passed away 2 weeks later and I don’t think I’ll ever have a more treasured item in my closet. As far as a go to item/outfit. Every single girl needs to invest in a great pair of denim & a killer pair of pointed toe pumps. It’s also vital you have one hand bag that makes you feel like you’re queen of the world.

If you’d like to check out the other stylish Pittsburghers I’ve interviewed, and find out more about #stylishpittsburgh campaign then head over here!

And if you’re a local boutique or style obsessed Pittsburhger and would like to be featured, or maybe you know someone who you think deserves to be featured?  Get in touch!!

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