2018-07-28 / People

Women’s Boutique Adds Flair To Astor Street

By Marley Tucker


At left: Jack hangs out at the store with his owner, Julie Suggitt, and is often seen keeping an eye on things from his sleeping box. He was given his own space to keep him from sleeping on the merchandise. He is wearing a dog hoodie that Ms. Suggitt made. At left: Jack hangs out at the store with his owner, Julie Suggitt, and is often seen keeping an eye on things from his sleeping box. He was given his own space to keep him from sleeping on the merchandise. He is wearing a dog hoodie that Ms. Suggitt made. Sew U.P. Style Co., a new clothing and accessories store created by Julie Suggitt, focuses on promoting the Great Lakes and the fashion of those who live among them.

Ms. Suggitt worked on the Island for two years before setting up a store on Astor Street across from the Mustang Lounge. She is an avid seamstress who began learning the trade when she was four years old.

Products range from homemade soy candles to wall decorations and puppy raincoats. Of particular pride to her are her “snarfs,” snap scarves that she sews from scratch. She is available to customize orders and fabric selections, overseeing the shop with her faithful dog, Jack.

Jack, a main attraction, models some of the products in the storefront for visitors walking by. His friendly demeanor welcomes passersby, many of whom call him by name. 11-year-old Jack has his own bed in which to relax near the front counter.

“Jack has his own line of accessories,” Ms. Suggitt said. “I like to joke that he’s part owner because of the influence he has in the shop. I expand to creating and selling more accessories based on what he likes. He brings in customers. Jack is great on the sales floor.”

Ms. Suggitt grew up in Sault Ste Marie and dreamed of opening up her own store.

“Business has been good,” she said. “I’m so lucky I got the shop up and running, and the flow of visitors is great for my business. I sell pieces inspired by my imagination and life growing up in the Upper Peninsula. I’d call the style rustic chic.”

Before becoming a business owner, Ms. Suggitt sold her products at trade shows, online, and through friends on social media.

“Sew U.P Style Co.” is a pun paying homage to where Ms. Suggitt grew up.

New products are coming to the store as the season continues. Ms. Suggitt plans to sell shoes and other women’s accessories. All of the artists she promotes in her shop are from Michigan. They currently include Michele Johnson of Native Nitz, Jill and Thomas Baugnet of Open Wings Gallery, Allison LaRue of Sweet Pea Creations, and Jude McConkey Photography.

“I know all of the creators and it helps me create a relationship with the customer when I can tell them where their merchandise came from. It’s important for me to promote their businesses, too,” said Ms. Suggitt. “I think the jewelry and photography I offer is appealing to a lot of different women.”

Dog hoodies are a popular item that Jack models regularly when the weather is brisk and cold. The item is customizable and available in an array of colors and sizes.

“Jack is like an emotional support dog for people visiting on the Island that miss their dog. He loves it,” she said. “I enjoy sharing my passion with every product I offer and creating connections with artists on the Island.”

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