Mother-and-daughter team behind new First & Main boutique
by Judy Stringer
Barb Mucci became an admirer of the Mainstream Boutique brand in Canton, where she worked for years in fundraising and where she and her husband raised their family. So when the empty-nesters decided to boomerang back to Northeast Ohio from a brief stint in Florida, Mucci said opening a Mainstream Boutique of her own was the perfect second act.
“I love retail and shopping. I like clothing and following trends and, most of all, I like connecting with customers, and that’s really what the Mainstream brand is,” she said. “It is that personal styling and neighborhood relationship that you create with your customer base.”
Macci partnered with her adult daughter, Erica Sutton, to launch the business at 93 First St. Sutton had previously worked “in the corporate world,” according to Macci, and has been integral to the new shop’s social media push.
The duo was familiar with Hudson’s retail scene after visits to a close family friend who lives in town, she continued, and jumped at the opportunity to fill a vacancy in the First & Main district.
“The renovation took longer than we would have liked, but when we finally did open, it was great to meet the people behind the faces we had interacted with on social media during the build out,” Macci said.
Since the opening, Macci has been surprised by “how cooperative the merchants are here,” even amongst the national brands that share the same First Street block.
“It’s really a compact little retail family, which has been very nice,” she said.
Mainstream Boutique had 80 franchises in 24 states in 2020, according to the company’s website. It was founded in Minnesota in 1991.
Macci said the store is “truly a boutique” in that it does not “go very deep into a garment run.”
“We will carry anywhere from eight to maybe 12 pieces of any one garment, and then when that one is through, we bring something fresh out,” she said. “We’re constantly evolving, constantly changing. Every day the store looks different than it did the day before.
“The whole Mainstream brand was built on creating something that strengthens and celebrates women. So regardless of body style, regardless of situation, we want you to be able to come in and find something that you love, that makes you feel better than you did when you walked in the door.” ∞