SHOP TIL YOU CROP AT BOP: THE ORIGINAL RETRO BRAND RETAILER OF THE MONTH
What I'm saying is you can never have enough cropped tops, right? There's an ultra hip boutique in Madison, Wisconsin, where you'll find hundreds of 'em, and a whole lot more of the swoon worthiest selection of shoes, bags, denim, and accessories from our Retailer Of The Month for August - bop.
I recently had the pleasure to speak with bop's Buyer & Store Manager, Kristin Hanefeld, who shared some of the fun that goes into a typical day at the college hot spot.
Andy: The minute you see the name 'bop,' it seems you're automatically in a good mood - and a shopping mood for some reason. What's the meaning behind the name?
Kristin: I know, right? This is actually some inside information for you because I don't think the story is out there, so hear goes... three good friends came up with the idea for this denim store, and were doing some research trying to come up with a cool androgynous name when they stumbled across an old album cover from the 50's called "Blue Jean Bop." That was the "Eureka!" moment, and bop was born.
Andy: We're honored you shared that highly classified info with us (For the record, the album jacket they probably stumbled across was a Rock N' Roll classic by Gene Vincent and his blue caps that came out in 1956.). Can you tell us when bop opened their doors, and then explain how you came on board?
Kristin: The store opened in 1999, with the website Shopbop.com going live in 2000. I started in 2006 after earning my degree in fashion marketing at Madison College.
Andy: Refreshing to see you were able to use your degree to find employment in a field you love. You do love it, right?
Kristin: Yes, I do love it. I can honestly say coming to work every day is different and fun. You never know what it's going to entail, and it's never mundane.
Andy: Can you give me a few examples of this awesome non-mundaneness, and what's up with the dog I see in the photo's?
Kristin: Ha, that's Sonic! So here's the story about Sonic the dog; He's a rescue dog and I just adopted him 2 months ago right outside of Minneapolis. I figure he ran away from Minnesota because he was sick of being a Gopher fan (ummm maroon and gold… Who does that look good on?) and longed to be a Badger - Red and White all the way! Sonic definitely helps in keeping mundaneness at bay.
Then there's the core of our customers who go to school at the University of Wisconsin, and they have a ton of school spirit which they bring with them when they come to the store. And even though we only sell women's apparel and accessories, there are a good number of guys who come in and shop for their girlfriends too. There just always seems to be an upbeat, happy vibe.
I also get to work on merchandising the store, and of course I love the buying. Most of our vendors visit me in the store, and I do get to go to New York for the Coterie trade show, and may to go to Las Vegas for the Project show. I love the constant pace of what's trending in fashion, and making sure bop is at the forefront of those trends. It's an exciting place to be, and you just have to visit us and experience it for yourself.
Andy: I may just do that. The Wisconsin-Minnesota rivalry game is in October & I've never been... Anyway, let's get back to buying. What kind of styles do you buy for the store when it comes to Original Retro Brand?
Kristin: Since 70-75% of our customers go to the University of Wisconsin, Badger gear is what I primarily focus on. I love the Original Retro Brand vintage 2-tone hoodies and scoop backs. Those cropped tops you mentioned? Love them. The fashion bodies and oversized bodies just blow out of here. You guys are always on the cutting edge and that makes my job pretty easy.
Thanks for the kind words Kristin, and congratulations on having bop named as the Original Retro Brand Retailer of the Month.
222 W. Gorham St. Madison, Wisconsin 53703
|Mon - Thu:||10:00 am||-||6:00 pm|
|Fri:||10:00 am||-||7:00 pm|
|Sat:||10:00 am||-||6:00 pm|
|Sun:||11:00 am||-||5:00 pm|