In 35 years of business, Georgette Diaz has seen trends come and go, hemlines rise and fall, but one thing that hasn't changed is that women are always searching for a dress that will make them look their best. To help in that department she opened Georgette's Boutique, where women could find the perfect outfit, whether it was for a casual or black-tie event.
The store's main focus is occasion dresses. From a bride's change-out dress that is shorter and edgier so she can wear it during the reception ($258), to mother-of-the-bride and mother-of-the-groom - more conservative but never frumpy - gowns (between $295 and $600), to gala, social and pageant gowns (Miss Tampa USA just got crowned in one of their dresses), Georgette's has the social scene's wardrobe covered.
The store has expanded three times since its first location in Hyde Park. Today on Dale Mabry, the store also has casual wear, like a vest that can be buttoned in five different ways ($49) and accessories like the Looks Like a Million Lunges Capris ($42) that are supposed to tighten everything under an outfit.
Georgette's has also become a family business with Diaz's daughter and granddaughter accompanying her on buying trips. The three generations of fashionable women all make their picks for what the store should carry in the coming season, and then each one is put to a vote to see if it pleases the others. That way, the store is able to carry styles that please women in every stage of their lives, from a more mature long gown with a cover-up sash ($378), to a dressed-up black dress with pearl details perfect for an office holiday party ($163), to a beaded mini dress ($590) for the prom.
Since having someone show up in the same dress is a major fashion no-no at events, the boutique makes sure to log every dress that is bought. Thick binders have proms and homecomings for every school in the Tampa Bay area and some out of state. Every social event for the next year is also logged, and if a dress has been already bought for a certain event, no one is even allowed to try that dress on in another color or size.
- Natalia Galbetti is a freelance writer and director of sales and marketing at k.hendrix in St. Petersburg. Follow her on Twitter at @NatiGalbetti.
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What: Occasion and casual women's wear.
Where: 141 S Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa. (813) 254-1141, georgettesfashions.com.
When: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mon.-Sat.