Hoping to hit the trifecta, clothing retailer Zest will soon open its third location – the newest one in Leesburg later this fall.
The Leesburg Zest will open at 32 South King Street (formerly occupied by the Leesburg Antiques Emporium) in late November. Zest is a sister concept to long-time Leesburg retailer lou lou, which also has a Middleburg presence.
West Federal Retail announced earlier this year that it planned to rebrand the Middleburg loulou ladies clothing location to Zest clothing & co. making it the second location after the Richmond flag ship store. “We wanted to continue to build upon the lou lou foundation, yet give our clothing stores their own separate brand and personality,” said Ben Wegdam, owner of the company when he announced the rebranding. Zest’s Middleburg location is at 9 East Washington St. The new name Zest and its concept was first unveiled in Richmond, Virginia in October 2017.
Zest features the latest trends in women’s clothing by offering recognizable brands such as Free People and Tribal, as well as value brands and private label. “We try to offer fashion for ages 20 to 65 since we want the daughter to be able to shop with the mother,” says Tara Wegdam, co-owner of Zest. The Wegdams own West Federal Retail, a company that operates 34 boutique locations across the East Coast and is headquartered in Middleburg. Company holdings include Zest Clothing and Co., lou lou boutiques, and Crème de la Crème.
When looking at expanding, the company found Leesburg to be a great fit. “The increased foot traffic resulting from new restaurant concepts got us excited to come to Leesburg,” he said. “We have been successful with our ladies accessory concept lou lou for over twelve years at 9 Loudoun Street SW in Leesburg and hope to bring additional shopping opportunities for customers visiting downtown by opening this new concept.”
Zest’s Public Relations Director Michelle McNaughton is confident that a combination of local and tourist visitors will be a winning combination. “Having been a part of this community for over 12 years we have a great base of loyal and local customers,” said McNaughton. “A lot of our customers come to visit week after week to see what’s new or simply to tell us how their last purchase wowed at their recent event.”
“We also have a lot of Salamander guests and tourists, so we see people from all over,” added McNaughton. “Our goal is to make sure whether you are from around the corner or across the country you feel like friends, and everyone enjoys shopping more when you’re with friends.”
Story and photos by Wendy C. Kedziersk
This article first appeared in the September 2018 Issue.