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|Business Spotlight: Boy Next Door looks forward to 30 more years|
|Written by Dyana Bagby|
|Friday, 17 September 2010 00:00|
For 30 years, locally owned and operated Boy Next Door has been making gay men look their best with stylish, name-brand jeans, slacks, shirts, underwear and bathing suits.
The business, opened in 1980 by John Sullivan, was part of the emerging gay market, says owner and manager David Boswell. Boswell took over the store in 1998.
“People were looking for a specialized look, clothes that made them look good and they couldn’t find in regular stores,” Boswell says.
The current economy is impacting business, he acknowledges.
“It’s been really tough. I’m not going to lie, but hopefully we’ve turned that corner and I plan to be around for another 30 years.”
The store sells everything from Speedos to Levis to Lucky brand to Kenneth Cole. While gay men looking for fitted, stylish, quality clothing are the majority of customers, Boswell says many gay women looking for something different also shop at the store.
“We also have straight women come in who shop for their boyfriends and straight men looking for something you can’t find in a ‘regular’ store who come in,” he says.
“And if they don’t want to tell their friends where they bought it, that’s fine with me,” he adds with a laugh.
As part of celebrating its 30th anniversary, Boy Next Door will offer a storewide 30 percent off sale on everything in the store from Sept. 14-30. That includes 30 percent off items already on sale and even gift cards.
“You can come in to buy a $100 gift card and buy it for $70,” Boswell says.
When Boswell took over the store in 1998, he doubled its size. The store is located in the same place where it originally opened — almost hidden between a dry cleaning business and a restaurant on Piedmont Avenue.
The shopping experience is pleasant, Boswell promises, saying he and his employees know most customers by their names. Also, plenty of people from out-of-town like to shop at Boy Next Door because it’s not a chain store and offers something different, Boswell says.
Top photo: Boy Next Door owner David Boswell celebrates three decades with a 30 percent off sale (by Bo Shell)
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