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Clint Engel

Connie Post designs DecorSecrets store for young, affluent women

DANIA BEACH, Fla. — Industry veterans Manny Better and David Guy have opened a Connie Post-designed DecorSecrets store here, playing to young and affluent female shoppers with fresh, colorful and eclectic displays.

 DecorSecrets graphicThe 10-foot “modern shopping girl,” silhouette represents DecorSecrets’ target customer — always on the lookout for what’s fresh and new.

Post, store designer, retail strategist and CEO of Greensboro, N.C.-based Affordable Design Solutions, said the partners in the 14,000-square-foot store in the Designer's Place center on Tigertail Boulevard gave her free rein — from the name on the front to the selection of upholstery and other goods to the store layout.

It's the first time Post has been involved in all aspects of a new retail project.

"It's fresh, it's different, it's eclectic," Better said. "People walk into this store and the first word out of their mouth is ‘wow.'"

He estimated the project represents an investment of about $1 million for the partners and said, "We'd be happy to do $4 million to $5 million" in sales in the first year.

The name DecorSecrets was inspired by Elle Décor magazine and retailer Victoria's Secret (the secret is fashion, Post said.) Throughout the open space, flowing with color, Post used string curtains and stained concrete floors, maintaining and airy and modern atmosphere.

"My goal was to create a completely different shopping experience that would excite the consumer, using oversize, whimsical and original 20-foot wall graphics in bright blue and green that convey the spirit of the brand," Post said in a release.

Among the graphics used in the store is a 10-foot silhouette of a "modern shopping girl," representing the target customer.

"That is the demographics," Post added later. "We want a girl who likes to get out and shop, and she's always looking for the next thing."

Click here for more photos.

Better, previously a self-employed industry importer, said he initially was inspired by the looks and success of Restoration Hardware, and indeed, some of DecorSecrets' goods come from the same sources. Among its key suppliers are Four Hands, Rowe, Natuzzi, Spectra Home and Tempur-Pedic in bedding.

At the entrance are eight ColorPost decorative accessory pods, designed by Post and sourced by Imax.

In its initial mailers, DecorSecrets has been targeting South Florida consumers with homes valued in the $500,000 to $1 million range for its upper middle to lower high-end offering, Better said.

"We offer a more eclectic assortment of merchandise that they can't find in other stores, and that was by design," said partner David Guy, who previously operated a chain of Leather and Comfort specialty stores in Florida. "We can appeal to a lot of different people at the same time, which was our goal in the way that we merchandised the building."

Better said initial response to the store, which opened in January, has been strong, from consumers as well as the designers, who have flocked to the store. He said one designer who attended the opening night party has gone on to do "almost a dozen homes with us. They just keep coming back."

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