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Coffee Talk
Business Observer Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2020 6 months ago

Entrepreneur opens new clothing boutique amid pandemic

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Darci Jacob opened Darci, a new Sarasota women’s clothing boutique, in October.

Sarasota entrepreneur Darci Jacob didn’t let the pandemic stop her dreams of opening her own boutique.

Jacob’s new boutique of women’s clothing, dubbed Darci, opened in October. “I always wanted to go forward with Darci,” Jacob tells Coffee Talk. “Eat the dessert, buy the dress — I really, really feel that way. Life is short. Live your dream. This was always my dream.”

Prior to opening Darci, Jacob was co-owner of another boutique, Panache, with a business partner. When Panache’s lease was up, she decided to take her chance on her dream, despite the pandemic.  

Panache closed Sept. 30, and Jacob didn’t waste any time getting her space spiffed up and ready for Darci to open Oct. 9. The boutique carries several lines of women’s clothing, from size zero to size 20. “I just want to make all women feel special,” says Jacob.

During the pandemic, Jacob has made some adaptations to make sure customers felt comfortable — and to make sure they kept shopping. She’s dropped off different sizes of clothing for customers to try on, she’s offered curbside pickup and she lets customers come in to shop before the store opens and after it closes if it makes them feel safer. She also sanitizes surfaces after clients shop at the store. Customers have appreciated the effort. “The outpouring in this town has been over the top,” says Jacob.

Prior to running Panache and Darci, for 18 years Jacob was store manager of Caché, a women’s boutique that used to be at Westfield Siesta Key, an indoor mall in Sarasota. Her years of experience in the industry and the area mean she’s created a following that could help Darci be a success.

While there aren’t as many cocktail dresses sold amid the pandemic, Jacob says she stocked up on casual clothing when she went to market in Atlanta in August to buy clothing. For 2021, she’s adapting to the unusual times. “I’ve already bought for spring,” she says. “I just bought a lot lighter than I normally would. I can always call and reorder.”

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