BY LEE ANN SANDWEISS
Location is not everything. Set back from the road at 333 S. Lincoln St. is the easy-to-miss shop Rebecca & Me. Housed in a charming pink-and-green bungalow on this non-shopping street, the boutique survives because its many loyal customers consider it a go-to place for women’s clothing and for decorative housewares, baby gifts, handmade greeting cards, and toiletries. They visit the shop often because they know owner Rebecca Carter is constantly receiving new shipments, and they don’t want to miss a thing.
Carter is an Indianapolis native who has owned some incarnation of her store for 32 years and knows what her customers want. Without hesitation, she describes the clothing she carries as “affordable, high-quality, comfortable, fashion-forward — but not trendy.” Carter’s focus is on pleasing her customers — who range in age from early-20s to 70s — and she augments her well-honed fashion instinct with regular trips to trade shows in Chicago.
Rebecca & Me carries American-made lines that are not readily available elsewhere locally, such as Nally & Millie, Habitat Clothes to Live In, Chalet, Flax, Comfy U.S.A., and Cut Loose. Carter stocks many separates that can be dressed up or down and play well with other pieces in a woman’s wardrobe. But there also are plenty of make-a-statement pieces with interesting details like chopstick buttons or pleats in unexpected places.
“I try to find classic, well-made clothing that women can wear for years,” explains Carter, who was an art major at Indiana University in the 1970s. “They often come back and get pieces that go with things they already have.”
The store also carries accessories and jewelry. Scarves in prints and solids abound — lighter gauzy and lacey ones for warmer weather and chunkier textures for the cool months. The jewelry case displays a wide selection of handcrafted pieces by Midwestern artists and local jewelers including Chelsea Jones. “Her Tactile Melodies line flies out of here,” says Carter.
A “big girls five and dime” is what Carter likes to call her store. Affordable — but with wares that can be mistaken for expensive merchandise from luxury department stores.
Visit Rebecca & Me’s Facebook page for photos of new arrivals. The shop is open seven days a week with free parking. Hours: Monday to Saturday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.