HANNIBAL — A dream is coming true for a Hannibal business owner during the soft opening of her new store, Annie Rose Boutique, at 115 S. Main St.
Dawn Long, owner of the new store, realized her dream to open her own clothing boutique after a few years of discussing it with her husband, Jesse. She said God and family members have supported her every step of the way — her sister-in-law, Vanessa Lucas, helps her find the latest women's fashions, and Jesse Long helped renovate the downtown store while working full-time. Long said she strove for a “shabby chic” atmosphere, and she is eager to join the Main Street business community and share her sense of fashion — with a name inspired by the name of her two-year-old daughter, Annalise Rose.
“I found myself going out of town to find clothes to buy, and I don't like shopping online, because you can't try anything on,” Long said. “So I really wanted to open a boutique for those reasons — more variety in Hannibal.”
Long constantly looks online at new trends and follows what's in style. She said Lucas also scours fashion trends every day, and they regularly collaborate to decide what items to carry next. She said they regularly “go back-and-forth, bouncing ideas off each other” as they find new fashions.
Before she could open the doors, though, a concerted family effort that included her parents-in-law building wooden racks and the jean table and her husband working on stripping the floors and ceilings, painting the walls, and installing chandeliers to transform the space.
“The shop just needed some love,” she said.
Long showed how rustic and artistic touches set off the clothing on display, including colorful decoupage-adorned planks on the counter that Long built and the barn wood shelves he installed. She is looking forward to bringing in additional inventory and coming up with new ideas before the planned grand opening on Friday, Nov. 15. She said she has felt welcome from the start when she joined the downtown business community — the Hannibal Area Chamber of Commerce answers all of her questions, and she said “everybody's been really friendly and welcoming.”
As everything comes together, Long is confident that she'll never be alone as the journey continues.
“Between God and family, I think we'll do great,” Long said. “It took a lot of prayer and support.”