By Annie Vazquez
Some people assume Stacey Allen's strawberry blond locks are the reason she named her newly relocated South Miami store Scarlett Boutique. Others phone her shop under the presumption it's the gentlemen's club in North Miami that bares nearly the same name.
''You don't know how many messages we get left over the weekend by men thinking it's the strip club,'' says Allen exploding into laughter. ``It's crazy.''
"The shop's name is actually ''a mix of both of my daughters names, Charlotte and Samantha,'' says the 44-year-old South Miami resident and New York transplant who began her retail career as a salesgirl at Bergdorf Goodman. Allen opened up Scarlett Boutique, which specializes in women's brand-name clothing and accessories, three years ago in Pinecrest's Suniland Shopping Center. Recession troubles earlier this year caused her to relocate to a smaller shop at the Dixie Pointe mall.
''I needed a smaller space,'' Allen says. ``People are spending less. Before, they would come in and buy five dresses. Now it's only one dress, and it's usually something that isn't trendy so I am being very careful of what I bring into the store.''
Allen is content in her new space. ''I love the new shop. It's more central,'' she says. ''And it's closer to my clients, who are mostly mothers and daughters from Gulliver and Ransom Everglades,'' says Allen, whose 15-year-old daughter also attends Gulliver Preparatory School.
The new store has a homey, Bohemian feel with a couch that was in the old shop, wood floors, gold curtains, a tan zebra-print rug. One wall is covered with blue and gold Tibi wallpaper. Allen's Pomeranian pooch, Logan, a fixture in the Pinecrest shop, is also around. He likes to sleep under the white display tables that are layered with Raven Denim shorts, Maya bikinis, AKA scarves and tees by So-Me and Seaton. Racks hold dresses, rompers, jumpsuits, tops and tunics suited for Allen's target market -- girls and women between 14 and 60.
''My daughters help me pick out clothes for teenagers and my salesgirls, Mica and Lydia, help me with selection for our 20- and 30-year-old clients. I pick out the stuff for moms,'' Allen says with a chuckle.
Scarlett's best sellers come from labels including T-bags, Rachel Pally, Alice + Olivia, Rory Beca, Wink, Charlotte Ronson and Daughters of the Revolution are the most abundant. Clothing is priced from $50 for a T-shirt and up to $400 for a dress.
''I've been shopping here for my dresses for a few years,'' says Pinecrest resident Alicia Widom. ``They have a great selection, and my daughters love the shop too.'' Most jewelry and hair accessories are produced by local designers Anamarie Ortega, Mary Louise Design and Steven Anton Rehage.
Colorful feather headbands by Ashley Nobe ''have been flying out of here,'' Allen says. ``They have a Great Gatsby sort of feel to them. I have everyone from 12-year-olds to 40-year-olds wearing them. They go great with a cocktail dress.''
Store owner Stacy Allen holds her dog "Logan" at Scarlett Boutique. Photo: Alexia Fodere.