ROOSEVELT ELEMENTARY — In the spirit of the season, businesses are getting a head start on sales and helping Roosevelt out at the same time with an all-day holiday boutique.
Saturday’s boutique features over 50 vendors who will give 20 percent of the day’s sales to the Roosevelt booster club. The range of products and prices varies.
“We have jewelry,” said Kimberly Shine, president of the booster club, “I have tote bags by Tote Le Monde … handbags, clothing, ‘tween’ clothing … we have a stationary store called Second Street Press coming — they’re new this year … and skin care products.
“It can go as little as 50 cents up to — the highest price is $600,” Shine said.
The club is hoping to receive anywhere from $5,000 to $7,000. Last year, Shine said, the boutique did well but sales were affected somewhat by the struggling economy. This year she hopes more money for the school and businesses will be generated.
The annual holiday boutique is scheduled before Thanksgiving in hopes of increasing the number of customers, Shine said. Usually the boutique was held in the first week of December and coincided with an annual carnival, but weather issues moved the carnival to a warmer season.
The absence of a carnival won’t take the cheer out of the boutique, however.
“In addition to the shopping we have a dad’s club cooking,” Shine said. “We have a bake sale as well.”
There will also be face painting and other fun activities to keep kids occupied. This year, potato latkes are also on the menu.
“The holiday boutique is a lot of fun,” said Beth Springer, president and designer of Beth Springer Handbags. “It’s an outdoor thing and it’s family oriented which is awesome. There’s a lot of vendors so there’s a whole lot to look at.”
Springer, who started in Santa Monica, designs handbags and sells them at various stores including Fred Segal. For her, the holiday boutique is about giving back to the schools and getting the word out about her company.
“We’re happy to do it,” she said. “I think it’s always beneficial for people to know we’re out there.”
Rebecca Cullen of Rebecca Cullen Jewelry Designs works with semi-precious and precious stones and makes a lot of lockets and pendants. She has participated in the boutique for a few years and has two boys at Roosevelt, but she says the event is one for the whole Santa Monica community.
“A lot of the community turns out, and not just the people who go [to Roosevelt],” she said. “It’s fun, you know, kind of bustling. … I’m happy to help out the school and get some exposure.”
Jim Derner, owner of Clean Living Soap, is of the same mindset. In addition to participating in the boutique, he sends 20 percent of his sales to schools that held events in which he sold his products. Derner makes and sells hypoallergenic soaps — something that started as a hobby for his own sake, and turned into a business because it was taking up so much of his time.
“I have found a very receptive audience,” he said. “Last year was terrific — pretty steady flow, because people come and go.”
Despite having much success at last year’s boutique, Derner says he doesn’t do it for the money.
“I never went into this to make big bucks,” he said. “I went into this because it was something to make and it was something I took great pride in.”
Roosevelt Elementary School is located at 801 Montana Ave., and the boutique is on the kindergarten yard, facing Montana Avenue. The event will last from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
“If you’re going to be shopping,” Springer said, “it’s pretty great to be shopping for a cause.”