Fashionistas have a new destination in West Hartford Center with the arrival of a women’s clothing boutique on Farmington Avenue. Silkworm, which has been located in Essex for the past 30 years, is now celebrating the recent opening of a second location in West Hartford. With a vast array of designer clothes and accessories, owner Erica Morizio is hopeful that her store will engender the loyal following her store in Essex has enjoyed for so long.
Morizio's first goal is "focusing on bringing in fabulous merchandise," she said. The Torrington native and Fashion Institute of New York graduate certainly has the credentials to do just that.
She has worked as a buyer for Bloomingdales, and held merchandising and sales positions for Giorgio Armani and Dana Buchman. After several years in New York, Morizio returned to Connecticut, got married and had two children, now three and four years old. She settled in Essex and became a loyal customer of Silkworm, a long-established local destination.
Morizio, who had been home full time with her children, learned that Silkworm's owner wanted to retire, and jumped at the chance to get back into the fashion world. She bought the store a year and half ago. Noting that many of her customers were traveling from as far away as greater Hartford to shop at the Essex store, Morizio decided that the time was right to open a second location.
Customer service is also a high priority. "Although I love the challenges of sales goals and figures, I really like being up front with the customers, building a relationship with them while helping them build their wardrobes," said Morizio.
She is happy to meet with women at their homes, and even customize her store hours to accommodate their schedules. Future in-store events will include trunk shows and special promotions for local college students. Morizio invites people to visit Silkworm’s Facebook page to learn about additional promotions.
Silkworm customers will find familiar designers such as Theory, Diane von Furstenberg, Goldsign jeans, Lilly Pulitzer for women and girls, Bailey 44 and Shoshanna. Cosabella, a prominent name in lingerie, will be available in the near future.
The store also carries some European designers that are new to the area. Recently introduced to the United States, Florentine designer Flavio Castellani specializes in cotton poplin and silk organza creations that that hold true to the Italian tradition of high-quality fabric and exquisite tailoring. Silkworm carries dresses and separates from this high-end line. Also in the store are contemporary, classic separates from Sita Murt, a Barcelona-based design house.
Accessories include leather handbags from Wall Street executive-turned-fashion designer Dareen Hakim and a line of Vera Bradley sunglasses.
Morizio emphasized that she is conscious of her price points and customers will be able to find items priced as low as $5.00. In fact, she has an entire display set up of reasonably-priced gift items, including Lilly Pulitzer makeup bags and Pulitzer baby bowl and utensil sets.
Her decision to open the second store seems to be working out. "I am very enthusiastic about being in West Hartford Center. Business has been great since I opened," said Morizio.
Silkworm is located at 982 Farmington Avenue. Current store hours are: Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 10 a.m.-5 p.m; Thursdays from 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Fridays and Saturdays from 10 a.m.-6 p.m; and Sundays from noon-4 p.m. For more information call 860-216-0124.
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