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We cannot get enough of the cutest (not to mention the most charming) boutiques in the South! This week we interviewed Jona Carver, owner of The Carousel in Columbia, South Carolina. Not only does the store have the best in back-to-school trends, Jona gives us the top trends for fall for southern belles and boys, must-haves for any new mom and her “before she had kids, one thing she swore she would never do!”. Read more for a playful Friday interview with one of our premier Le Top and Rabbitmoon boutiques!

 THE CAROUSEL
4525 Forest Drive
Columbia, SC 29206
864.505.4141

 or go to www.carouselkidsboutique.com for more information 

CHECK-IN and JOIN The Carousel’s Facebook page and click HERE

 1.    How long has your store been around and what was the inspiration behind the name of your store?
Jona: 
I opened this store in February of 2010. Everyone told me I was crazy to open a store at that time, but I knew I could do it! My children and I love horses and the carousel ride at any amusement park was always my favorite, as well as my kids! The carousel represented to me the magic and imagination of childhood.

2.    Tell us the inside scoop about any special events that you have planned at your store this coming summer, especially the fun deals we can expect.  
Jona: 
The Carousel is truly lucky to be part of a wonderful shopping center called Forest Village. The other stores and I are hoping to plan a fall festival for all the kids with games, costume contest, apple bobbing and who knows what!! The Carousel is also working with local artists to promote their wonderful talents in our store with special previews and sales!

3.    Back-to-school is just around the corner – what are 3 trends you can tell parents to look for when buying their kids’ wardrobe?
Jona:  
Parents, like myself, are always looking for a good value, durability and quality. When I brought Rabbitmoon into my store in the fall of 2010, parents were intrigued. No one else in my area carried this line from Le Top. When the spring line of this year arrived, I was blown away by all the comments I received. Parents told me how the Rabbitmoon outfits were their children’s favorite. How they were pleased with how they washed and held their shape.  I could hardly keep the spring line stocked!!

4.    Tell us…before you “had kids or grandkids, what is one thing you swore you’d never…?” Please share!
Jona: 
Adhere to the “5 second” rule.  All of my friends had babies before I did, and I would watch as “little Johnny” would throw his bottle or paci on the floor. My friends would always say “5 second rule”, blow it off and hand it back to “little Johnny”. Well, I just thought that was unsanitary until I had one of my own. After running back and forth one day numerous times, rinsing bottles or paci, I had had enough. Now the “5 second rule” RULES in my house!!

5.    Give us your top 3 essentials for a kid’s back-to-school wardrobe from your store.
Jona: 
For the boys, the staple in the south has to be a good polo shirt and khaki pants. We carry Bella Bliss that has outstanding quality and the soft cottons. And what little southern belle wouldn’t be complete without her smocked dress. Le Za Me from Louisiana fits our bill for this traditional school apparel.

6.    If you could pick one essential for a new mom for her baby from your store – what would it be and why?
Jona:  
The biggest, softest blanket you can find. We have Little Giraffe blankets and they are the best blankets around!

7.    Describe the neighborhood of your store locations in Columbia, South Carolina. Did you grow up in any of the local area?
Jona: 
Our store is located in Forest Acres, a city within our capital city Columbia. Although our address is Columbia, our store is within the city limits of Forest Acres. Forest Acres is wonderful community full of great schools, local flavors and true southern charm!

8.    Tell us about a “special” moment that made your day working at your store.
Jona:  
Soon after I opened the store, a little girl named Lily came in with her mom. They had been shopping at other stores that day and Lily was getting tired of trying on clothes. She was looking for a special dress for her birthday and just could not find what she wanted. After many go-arounds, Lily found her dress. The next day, Lily and her mom came back to the store with a thank-you card Lily had made for me. She said that she loved her dress and that everyone thought she was the most beautiful one at the party. I nearly cried!!

7.    What Le Top or rabbitmoon Spring/Summer 2011 collection is your store’s favorite and why?
Jona: 
This would have to be the Rabbitmoon Empress Collection. Any piece in this collection! I literally sold out of the dress from the back room before it could even be steamed!! This print was my best seller!

 



THE CAROUSEL
4525 Forest Drive
Columbia, SC 29206
864.505.4141 

or go to
www.carouselkidsboutique.com
for more information 

CHECK-IN and JOIN
The Carousel’s Facebook page
and click HERE





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Photo by: Charley Gallay/WireImage

Today is Stella Doreen McDermott’s birthday! Congrats to this cute little princess turning 3-years-old! The dughter of Tori Spelling and photographer Dean McDermott will be blowing out the candles with big brother Liam Aaron, 4-years-old! Hm, what Le Top party dress to wear? We think Stella would be oh-so-cute in the Le Top “Simple Darling” Collection pink sundress – perfectly pink in every way! 

Le Top "Simply Darling" Collection Sundress

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