From shopping for coworkers to picky teenage daughters, East parent Wynne Foster, mother to junior Tommy Foster, always knew that the East community was in need of a gift store. So when she and Heather Hanson, mother to Luke and Elliot Hanson, heard from a leasing agent that there was an open space in Corinth Square, they decided to build In Clover — their clothing and gift boutique.
Since its opening 10 years ago, In Clover’s popularity has grown through word of mouth in the community. People can feel comfortable there met with a friendly staff, a bowl of jelly beans at the register and reasonable prices. According to Foster, InClover’s environment has generated regulars who feel so at home that they ask for fashion advice like they are talking to their older sister and even walk out of dressing room practically naked.
“A lot of people are intimidated by boutiques, we wanted it to feel very laid back and relaxed,” Foster said. “We try to help them with whatever they need help with, whether it’s an outfit for a party or a night out to dinner.”
The staff at In Clover all know each other from mutual friends of family and they regularly go out to dinner at Cafe Provence for their favorite french onion soup — however there are still some challenges.
In Clover grew faster than anyone had expected, which led to Foster and Hanson needing to hire employees. Since neither of them have business experience, the process of owning a business has been an experiment. They’re still working out the perfect formula for orders and pricing, but each day they come a little closer to figuring it all out.
“We had no idea what to expect [when we first opened], our husbands thought that we were maybe going to make $600 that day,” said Foster. “They printed our reports and announced our sales, [we had made thousands of dollars]. We all started crying because we were so tired. We just couldn’t believe our numbers, we couldn’t.”