BY TRACY ZOLLINGER TURNER
PHOTOGRAPHY BY RICHARDSON STUDIO
When Johna Davis and Heather Short first opened Piace Boutique in 2010, it was a leap of faith. Born and raised in Bloomington, they each had stable careers—Davis was a certified public accountant, Short a surgical technician. But they both felt there was a gap in the local fashion market.
“We didn’t feel like there was any really good shopping for women our age,” says Davis, 46. So the sisters-in-law (Short is married to Davis’ brother) opened up a storefront on East Kirkwood. “The opportunity came at the right time, so we decided to take a chance, and the business became a success,” says Short, 40. They developed a parallel online business, and began to steadily outgrow their original space. Last September, Piace moved to a larger location in the new outdoor section of College Mall.
The clothing, shoes, and accessories they sell are guided by their individual tastes. “We buy what we personally love,” Davis says. “Heather loves the more comfortable, flowy pieces. I want to be comfortable, but still very stylish, so I like the more timeless, classic styles.” They also keep the fashion affordable—under $100 overall, and less than $50 for most dresses. Davis says their aesthetic appeals to a wide age-range of women—anyone who enjoys one-of-a-kind clothes that are “the right kind of fit and aren’t trying too hard to be too young or too old.”