Natalie & Karla – Napier’s Two Lippy Ladies
The friends started their business online in 2010 and then set up shop in Hastings initially, before settling into their Market Street Napier store in 2016. Two Lippy Ladies clothing, which Karla describes as “vintage inspired”, is in huge demand by women around the country, including our very own Prime Minister.
“There is very little in the way of beautiful dresses designed for women with curves. We found it really frustrating that there was not enough choice when it came to clothing – whether it was fabrics that did not sit well or clothing that was not flattering. We decided to bring together a vintage inspired range of dresses and clothing that ticked all the boxes. Pretty and a little bit different but within an affordable price range. Many of our brands start at size 8, going through to a size 28.
“Our aim is to provide New Zealand women with a range of flattering and pretty dresses that have shape and structure that celebrate our curves – no tent dresses or tunics here! It’s about being happy in your body no matter what your size. And most women feel really good in a lovely dress that suits their shape,” says Karla.
Two Lippy Ladies started out as an online business operating out of Natalie’s kitchen. “The business grew quickly and before long we took over Nat’s lounge and hallway,” laughs Karla. “We realised we needed a bricks and mortar store to accommodate the growth. We now have a staff of five and business is great – there is such demand from women of all shapes and sizes for our dresses and accessories. Our fashion is affordable to most and we have a high repeat customer rate.
Two Lippy Ladies is a multi-channel business – there is the Market Street store, an online shop and both owners are active on Facebook and Instagram, crediting social media with getting the brand out into the market and connecting with customers. Recently Laybuy was introduced into both their online shop and Napier store.
“We always had traditional layby available instore where you pay a purchase off before collecting it, but LayBuy is changing retail by enabling customers to take their purchases with them and still pay them off over time. It works well for us and our customers.”
We love having a business in Napier – it’s such a vibrant city and there’s always something going on. Being located in Market Street, we’re right in the middle of it all and are surrounded with other independent retailers. Everyone loves the city and visitors really enjoy being here.