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Bailey Creek hanging it up

Bailey Creek Boutique Owner Sandy Reinke looks through some shirts to make sure everything is tagged correctly and up to her standards.

NEW ULM – After seven years as a staple of downtown, Bailey Creek Boutique is currently set to close with liquidation sales starting Thursday.

Owner Sandy Reinke said there were two main reasons she chose to close the store. The first is she believes after 62 years, she needs to take a good long look at retirement. The other is the economy and its impact on her store’s prices.

“Clothes are getting more expensive all the time,” she said. “My passion for the store was always to bring clothes in that were affordable and good quality. It’s getting to be more difficult because everything in life has gotten to be a lot more expensive. For me to continue business, my prices would have to go up quite a bit. That was not what I set out to do seven years ago.”

This was not in Reinke’s business plan. She said she hoped to be in business for at least 10 years. Reinke said events in the past couple of months caused her to reconsider these plans.

“In the last few months we said goodbye to people that were our age or younger,” she said. “It was just something that made us realize it was probably time to go to my next chapter in life.”

Employees Wendy Domeier, Susie Anderson, and Elaine Paa stand with Owner Sandy Reinke (L-R) as they share their last few days working together at Bailey Creek Boutique.

Reinke said some of the first people she notified were her top 100 customers. What surprised her was that only around 65% of that top 100 were locals. She had developed a following in areas further away, which represented 35% of that notification list. Reinke said while they are sad to see the store go, they are very supportive of her and her life journey.

Over the years, Reinke said one of the biggest changes she’s seen is people being more comfortable with casual wear and feeling less pressure to dress up for certain events.

“People aren’t dressing up as much for weddings anymore,” she said. “They’re not dressing up for events, for church, for work. Everything has become much more casual.”

By running the store, Reinke said she was able to get Tea for Cancer off the ground and grow it into what it has become today. It has also allowed her to form bonds with repeat customers from outside Minnesota, who would make a day trip out of coming to her store.

Starting June 6, the store will have everything 25-75% off until they close for good at a currently unknown future date.

Bailey Creek Boutique Owner Sandy Reinke stands outside her store, where two large signs let everyone know unfortunately the end is near for the store.

While that is the plan currently, Reinke said there is potential for someone else to take over if plans materialize. She said she has been in talks with one person so far, and she is open if others are interested.

“If anybody knows of anyone else that is interested, we’d love to see this continue,” she said. “There’s definitely a need. I’ve done very well, especially with my plus size [section]. I am concerned that my plus size customers are going to have fewer options when I’m gone and they certainly need that opportunity.”

For more information, call 507-380-8716, visit https://baileycreekboutique.com/, or https://www.facebook.com/BaileyCreekBoutique/.

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