LIV Aspen reaches out to men, opens new store
The idiom “behind every great man is a great woman” could very well sum up the business strategy for an Aspen couple.
Holly Davis-Buglione, who has owned the LIV Aspen women’s accessories and clothing store on East Cooper Avenue for the past decade, is banking on her notion that her newest boutique — this one devoted to men — will build on the success of its female-oriented predecessor.
“This place emulates the women’s (store) exactly,” Davis-Buglione said Friday from the new LIV Aspen men’s store. “It’s like brand recognition. We wanted this to be, when people walk in, they go, ‘Oh, my God. I feel like I’m in LIV Aspen, but only the men’s version.’ So this one is handsome and dark and charcoal and black, and in the women’s (store) it’s super light and gray and white chairs, so we just made this the more masculine.”
Noticing a dearth of men’s clothing and accessory stores in Aspen, Davis-Buglione and her husband, Michael Buglione, chose none other than Small Business Saturday, Nov. 29, to capitalize on their retail instincts.
That’s when they opened the men’s edition of LIV Aspen on 400 block of South Galena Street, one that complements the all-women’s LIV boutique located around the corner.
Prior to opening, LIV Aspen let its 2,000 followers on Instagram know about the new store, while sending out another 8,000 emails to its customer base.
The result has been a busy store, meaning busy days for the couple.
“The response has been great,” Davis-Buglione said. “People like to see locally owned businesses succeed.”
Not only have they and another employee been overseeing the new store during the holiday retail rush, Buglione, once a Pitkin County sheriff’s deputy, is project superintendent for the construction of developer Mark Hunt’s boutique hotel at the old Crystal Place space at the corner of East Hyman Avenue and Monarch Street. Prior to a life in retail, Davis-Buglione had worked in interior design.
The stylish Buglione joked that his job demands that “I wash clothes and wear clothes.” Yet his wife said he had accumulated knowledge in the trade by joining her on buying trips in the past.
“I kind of knew the process,” he said. “When we were looking for the men’s stuff, I just knew what would look good in the store.”
LIV Aspen has its own brand, VIVO, which includes Italian-made cashmeres and jackets. Its store inventory also includes such clothing brands as John Varvatos and Belstaff; it also carries shoes, hats and crystal whisky glasses, among other items.
Similar to its counterpart, the men’s store also has a lounge-like area for shoppers — and spouses — to kick up their feet.
“We want people to come to Aspen and go home with something special rather than something they can buy in New York or Miami or anywhere else they live,” Davis-Buglione said. “It’s lifestyle brands, wearable, very affordable, yet elevated branding.”
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Nearly 100 locally-owned businesses negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic have been awarded grants from a pool of $1.2 million in relief funds from Pitkin County.