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Anisa’s Closet offers high fashion at a low price

Date: 7/25/2014

AGAWAM – A new shop in town caters to patrons who love designer duds, but who are on a budget.
Anisa’s Closet, 168 Elm St., celebrated its grand opening on July 21. The store is located in the former Agawam mills. Owners Lisa Crouse and Anita Mooney combined their first names to create the moniker.
Men and women’s clothing is for sale at the store along with accessories such as women’s shoes, scarves, purses and jewelry. A section is also dedicated to Marty’s Eye Candy, an array of glassware that features items such as jewelry, plates and suncatchers.
“It was a vision and we just ran with it,” Crouse said. When asked how long the idea took to become reality, she said, “If I said years, I’d be lying. It was about six and a half weeks.”
Mooney explained that the inspiration for Anisa’s Closet was to create a “more upscale, boutique” feel. Brands available include Coach, Liz Claiborne, Loft, Elie Tahari and American Eagle. She has visited stores where the clothing for sale has stains and other blemishes. Mooney said she prides herself on “giving a fair amount” to those who sell items to the store.
“I hope we have something for everybody, something they’ll fall in love with.”
Crouse said the resale shop accepts women’s clothing from size zero to 26 and all men’s sizes. Articles are inspected “by eye” to ascertain wear and tear. The shop does carry some vintage pieces.
Crouse, like Mooney, wanted to offer quality items at an affordable price for everyday people who are required to appear well dressed for their jobs, but cannot afford to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on one piece.
Mayor Richard Cohen was on hand for the ribbon cutting that day. He said, “It just makes me so happy to see all of these nice shops.” He added that new tenants bring new life to the older buildings that are rehabilitated and redeveloped to house the businesses.
Martha Amsden, self-proclaimed “glass slave” and creator of Marty’s Eye Candy, said, “I’m please that they appreciate my art.” This is the first time her work has been available in a retail store.
“I want [the store] to get bigger,” Mooney said, sharing her hopes of growing the business.
To contact Anisa’s closet, call 860-394-8841 or 860-798-3331. Hours of operation are Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.