A new business is scheduled to open in downtown Aiken later this month. Aiken Country Clothiers will be located at 110 Laurens Street in the storefront formerly occupied by Lee's Bags & Jewelry.
“Aiken Country Clothiers will be part of the Nobel Nielsen company,” said Elisabeth Plaskitt, who heads Nobel Nielsen and will run the new store.
Aiken Country Clothiers will offer women's clothing, shoes and accessories. Men's accessories also will be sold, and Plaskitt wants to add men's clothing from England in the future.
While planning Aiken Country Clothiers, Plaskitt concentrated on finding items that weren't offered anywhere else in the city.
“I'll have a line of Italian loafers that actually are sold in London; I'll be the only one selling them in the United States,” said Plaskitt in a telephone interview Monday. “Flats are the mainstay of the line. They're very soft and very comfortable, and they come in sizes 5 to 13. I'll also carry a line of crocodile handbags that I will be able to do special orders for in different colors.”
In addition, Aiken Country Clothiers will offer the Needham Lane and April Cornell clothing lines.
“In the fall, I'm going to be bringing in a lot of tweeds and that sort of genre of clothing,” Plaskitt said.
Products in a variety of price ranges will be available and the store also will carry plus size apparel.
“Along with the crocodile handbags, I'll sell inexpensive vegan handbags,” Plaskitt said. “In the clothing lines, there could be anything from a $15 summertime shirt to a $200 shirt from England.”
Plaskitt operated Nobel Nielsen Shoes in Middleburg, Va., from November 2007 through May 2012. A number of the goods at Aiken Country Clothiers will be similar to those offered at Plaskitt's former shop. However the establishment of the new store “will allow me to expand and do some different things,” Plaskitt said. “It's been a fun process.”
Plaskitt has a mobile merchandising venture that she will continue to run. She travels to horse shows, steeplechase events, flower shows and Christmas bazaars.
“Obviously, it will have some of the same things that will be in the new store, but it also will have items that I won't sell at Aiken Country Clothiers,” Plaskitt said. “There will be a little bit of a different variety and the items will be geared to the event that I'm going to.”
Plaskitt, who is originally from Upperville, Va., is looking for a place to live in Aiken. She decided to start a store here for several reasons.
“I have a lot of friends who are a part of the old Aiken,” she said. “I've also had a lot of friends from Middleburg move down to Aiken. I looked at several different places to move to (for business reasons) and Aiken seemed like the most viable and had the most desirable demographics.”