Local Designer Deepali Roth’s Passion for Fashion
Local designer Deepali Roth hopes to turn her lifelong love for fashion into a legacy
by: Anna Zeck
Deepali Roth has practically grown up with fashion. As a young girl in Mumbai, India, she eagerly started working alongside her father, who owned several clothing factories. At age 13, she started traveling to small villages throughout India to work with women making printed fabrics and dresses to sell in boutiques in the city. By the time she was 18, Roth was running 50 boutiques all over India. “I’ve been a fashionista since I was a little girl,” she says.
Along the way, Roth became an astute student of design, thanks to her grandmother, who taught her to sew during summer breaks from school. “It was always a hobby,” Roth says. “When I was in school, I used to design the school uniform. If we had a function or talent show, I used to make the costumes for everyone.” So when the time for college arrived—this time in the United States—it was a no-brainer to combine her love of business and fashion with a business degree.
Upon graduating, she moved to New York, the fashion capital of the world, and started a business designing and manufacturing for several department stores before becoming a buyer for Gap and Express. “I got to know how they worked and how to work with manufacturers,” she says. “That was really good knowledge growing up in that area. I can look at a piece of clothing and tell what material it is immediately.”
But Roth couldn’t escape the itch to design more freely. “I have creativity always going,” she says. “I will be talking to you and designing in the back of my brain.” Roth realized she didn’t enjoy having to put someone else’s name on her designs, and on making the move to Edina, began dreaming up plans to launch her own line. The first step in her plan? Open a retail space. “I realized that, no matter what, you have to have your own retail space if you want to put your name on things,” she says. “I realized this would be the place, and this is the time for me to have my own design and my own store.”
As luck would have it, a former boutique space became available at 50th and France, and Roth snatched up the prime location. She worked day and night painting, installing shelving and bringing in merchandise before opening Fashionologie this past November. “I always feel like everyone is unique in this world and I like to bring that out,” she says. “I love this connection one-on-one with the women. I want to make them feel special.”
Fashionologie offers women’s and kids’ clothing and accessories, all with Roth’s signature colorful twist. “I’m a bling girl,” she says. “I feel like everyone in Minnesota gets into a rut during the winter. We already have a hard winter; we don’t need to wear black and gray all the time!” The shop has become a second home for her, and she can often be found there until the early hours of the morning. But for Roth, the excitement of seeing a satisfied customer is reward enough. “That’s like a million dollars to me,” she says. “That’s what I want to bring out in every woman, because people don’t realize how unique they are. We will help you look beautiful the way you are.”
Only a month after her store opened, Roth began work on her own line, to be launched under the Fashionologie name this month. Roth started by sketching and then sewing master samples of each piece. “I get inspiration from women in the store all the time,” she says. “I never shut down my brain.” Roth has tapped her extensive experience working with overseas manufacturers, which she says has greatly helped speed the entire process of designing her line. She regularly flies to various Asian countries to work with the manufacturers, picking out materials and color combinations, and overseeing the production of the pieces.
The first collection will have eight or nine pieces, including summer tops, jackets, blazers and dresses, as well as purses and jewelry. Roth says the line is comfortable and figure-flattering, but never without her signature edge. “I always pay attention to those little details,” she says. “Studs on the sleeves or a neon color.”
Based on the response from customers, Roth hopes to continue to grow the line and expand every season, offering solutions for fashion-hungry women. “In a small town, you get to know everyone,” she says. “It’s the same as a boutique. Come to the boutique and everyone knows everyone. We will help you look beautiful the way you are.”
Stylemakers: Fall Fashion: Behind the scenes of our fall fashion photo shoot featuring great local boutiques.
Edina boutique fulfills designer's dream
Fashionologie brings Deepali Roth's vision and designs to Edina's 50th and France retail hot spot.
Article by: Todd Nelson , Special to the Star Tribune - May 19, 2013
Deepali Roth had dreamed of opening her own store for years but had only five days to make Fashionologie, her Edina women’s boutique, a reality.
Fortunately, Roth had been preparing for the opportunity for much of her life. She got her start working in her father’s textile factories and selling fashions in their native India, and for the last decade has designed and manufactured wholesale clothing, jewelry and accessories for major department stores as head of Minneapolis-based Deep Designs.
Drawing on industry experience and connections and working day and night with her husband and employees, Roth succeeded in opening Fashionologie in early November. That was just a handful of days after the 3,000-square-foot space had become available in Edina’s 50th and France business district.
Fashionologie offers high-quality, “trendy but classy” clothing, accessories, handbags and shoes, Roth said. Popular brands include Miss Me and Rock Revival. The store also features purses, jewelry and accessories that Roth has designed. She plans to introduce her own clothing line this summer. Shoppers get individualized advice from Roth and her staff on picking what to wear to an event, updating their style or finding flattering looks. That service has helped create return customers and drive referrals that bring new shoppers to the store.
Prices at Fashionologie are more affordable than shoppers typically might associate with the upscale, retail-intensive intersection of 50th and France, Roth said.
“People think that 50th and France is very expensive, that everything is over $100 and that only older people come and buy,” Roth said. “I’m trying to change that here, bringing in some uniqueness to the store and good quality with an affordable price. I have young people who come and buy, moms who come in and buy, and women who are 60 who come and buy.”
Textile veteran Roth, 40, said her knowledge of fabrics, fashion and manufacturers enables her to find high-quality, well-designed merchandise at a good value. She travels to New York, Los Angeles and Asian markets to find items for the store.
Roth grew up in the textile industry, with a father whose factories produce a wide range of fabrics and employ thousands. In addition to working for him, she, then in her late teens, had a boutique in India where she sold clothing with handwork done by women in small villages.
Roth moved to this country to pursue an MBA at the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management. She became a business partner with the owner of Deep Designs before buying him out. There, she developed relationships with manufacturers and buyers to produce and sell the clothing, jewelry and accessories she designs, which are separate from those she develops for Fashionologie.
Roth said she hopes to open additional locations but will wait at least two years before doing so. She is having the store’s website updated to offer online sales in the near future. After strong sales since the start of the year, Roth is expecting to top $100,000 in sales this year. Revenue last year at Deep Designs, which has 40 employees, was more than $500,000.
Fashionologie has been a hit with repeat shoppers such as Carol Buckingham.
“I love the store and shop there a lot,” said Buckingham, who lives in Plymouth. “I would call it a boutique-like feel without the boutique-like prices. She has good price points on clothing and jewelry and it’s really unique things.’’
Customer Sharon Torodor of St. Louis Park said Roth and her staff have helped her modernize her wardrobe.
“The prices are medium-priced but everything is very stylish. It’s fun to shop there,’’ Torodor said. “It brings something fresh to that intersection.”
The expert says: Dave Brennan, marketing professor and co-director of the Institute for Retailing Excellence at the University of St. Thomas’ Opus College of Business, said Fashionologie’s pricing and positioning help the store appeal to a broader range of customers that few chains are serving. That likely will help it succeed at 50th and France and eventually expand to other metro locations.
“It’s based more on value than paying extra for high quality and somewhat fashion-forward types of merchandise,” Brennan said. “I think it could well hit a sweet point for Twin Cities shoppers.”
Roth’s wide industry knowledge and design experience also are strengths, as is her timing in opening a store in a rebounding economy, Brennan said. He also likes the Fashionologie name: “It has a connotation that it’s smart fashion rather than something for a fashionista that’s going to be temporary.”
By Sara Glassman
Do you sometimes look at your closet like a pop quiz that asks the same question every day: What should you wear?
Deepali Roth has the answer. The Edina resident opened Fashionologie – a new boutique on 50th and France designed to help shoppers express their individuality through what they wear.
You’ll be able to shop a variety of prices from $10 up to $150, from cell phone cases to scarves to Miss Me jeans to handbags that Deepali designed herself.
Though a first-time shop owner, Deepali has a background in designing and manufacturing with Macy’s and Nordstroms, so she understands quality fabrics and construction.
Here’s how she suggests you get started in finding your unique style:
Wear Clothes with Confidence
When you wear clothes that you love and feel good in, that confidence shows and makes you look as beautiful on the outside as you are on the inside. Know and love your body and who you are by finding clothes that allow you to draw attention to your best features. If you have a tiny waist, opt for slim belts to accentuate it. If you have gorgeous arms, look for sleeveless garments that show off your sexy limbs. If you are very curvaceous, you can certainly accentuate an hourglass figure with V-necks, belted shirts and fitted skirts.
It’s All About Fit!
One mistake that women often make is wearing clothing that is not the correct size for their body. Many women buy clothes too large because they feel uncomfortable about their weight or feel self-conscious about some aspect of their bodies. Buying clothing that fits properly is the first step to looking great. Don’t wear clothing too large for your body, but also avoid garments that pull, gap, or bunch – all indications of being too tight.
Embrace Trend and Color
Wondering how to wear some of the season’s trendy clothes? A good rule of thumb is to pair a trendy piece with something classic. Too many trendy pieces worn together can look overdone. Again, wearing trend clothing is also about balance. For example, skinny jeans worn with a tunic top or a slightly blousy top will look stylish, but pair them with a tummy-baring baby tee, and the look will be less than elegant. Use colors, and don’t be afraid of bling either.
This story originally appeared in the February 2013 Savvy.mn Magazine.
FEBRUARY 16, 2013
Tor the locals: fashionologie
we plan on doing a few more posts about this place when we actually style the clothes we bought, but we wanted to do a quick post for the locals today.
We went to this fabulous store last night called fashionologie. it's on 50th and france, right along the main shopping strip in edina. normally i never shop in this area because it's usually very expensive. well, my mind was changed. we walked in and right away, we were greeted with smiles and welcomes and beautifully styled clothing and accessories. there were bright colors and great textures...i wanted one of everything.
nora and i ended up grabbing a few of the same things, because you know, we're sisters and have very similar taste. we clicked a few pics in the huge and comfy changing rooms so you could see a sampling of what fashionologie has to offer. again, we will be doing a few sister remixes and other blog posts to show off what we actually bought.
Sorry for the phone pics, but it's what we had. isn't their stuff gorgeous? and not only was the clothing great and affordable, but the service was fabulous. we met the owner and she is a talented, beautiful and charming woman.
so if you're local, please stop by. extra bonus, there is a huge 60-70% sale going on right now. extra, extra bonus, there is a living social deal good until sunday (only valid on non-sale items)!
we hope you're all having a great weekend!! xoxo, two birds
This story originally appeared in the two birds blog Saturday February 16, 2013
Posted by Jilliebeanie Tuesday March 5th 2013
Once upon a Wednesday afternoon, I got my hair done.
That deserves it's own paragraph. It's a big, hairy deal.
I sat in the salon chair at Bleach, catching up with my stylist (and cousin - yo Megs!) about life and fashion. We both like our clothes on-trend and relatively inexpensive. We agreed that this usually leads us to mass-produced junior brands that run way too small (since when is a size 6 "large"?).
Call it fate or coincidence. What happened next will astound you...
I checked my phone to find an email from Fashionology, inviting me to their new store on 50th & France in Edina. Okay, so maybe it didn't seem so unusual or miraculous at the time, but simply a welcome opportunity to branch out.
Accompanied by my freshly styled hair, I bolted out to Minneapolis' affluent south suburb. Owner Deepali showed me around and answered all of my questions. She knows fashion and has a clear vision for the store. She identified the exact need Megan and I had discussed just hours earlier. These unique qualities have already made the store a great success:
Affordable. Not a common trait of the retail in that area, but you won't find me cryin' about it. Sticker shock is overrated anyway.
Accurate sizing. Oh, hallelujah. Fashionology is currently clearancing out junior fit items in order to make way for new product that won't give average-sized women a complex. Thankyouverymuch. Admittedly, I'm pretty stoked to shop the sale. At 70% off, I'll wear any size so long as I can bend my elbows. Hey, a deal is a deal.
Fashion forward. I was impressed by the variety of trends represented, but the bold prints and textures are what really caught my eye. A lot of boutiques claim to have unique pieces, but often end up with the same items as the next shop. I found dresses at Fashionology that I haven't seen anywhere else.
Very cool. I'll be back.
This story originally appeared on the Spoils of Wear Website Tuesday March 5th, 2013