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Doing the Doux 

Women who shop at La Doux Boutique (207 W. Harrison Ave., 482-1535) find the best of all worlds: they can dress fashionably -- in clothing made from the latest prints and fashion colors and in popular styles made for the aesthetics of their maturity level -- without spending a fortune. Plus, customers receive personal service in a moderately sized boutique in a laidback area.

'There's really nothing like our store around here,' says Dana Desforges, who owns La Doux with her sister, Denise Crespo. 'There was a definite need for a boutique in Lakeview. We're trying to provide a convenient location where our customers can come and shop without the mall chaos and find unique things that everybody can wear ... so people can feel they're in style but their belly's not hanging out.'

The sisters opened La Doux six years ago and mostly serve women in their mid 20s on up. The store carries sizes ranging from 4 to 16 and offers casual wear, skirts, blouses, cocktail dresses, handbags, jewelry and other fashion accessories. Brand names include Equestrian, One Girl Who, Cotton Wear, Two Star Dog and more.

'We try not to carry things that we know other stores are carrying,' Desforges says. 'That's a big focus for us, because we want [La Doux] to be different. There are so many boutiques now that we have to keep changing. We do trunk shows twice a year, so if customers don't like a style we're carrying (from a vendor), they have a chance to see the whole line.'

Compact Designs
New Orleans native Azby Brown, an architect and expert on small-home lifestyles, will discuss how to make small spaces live large at 7 p.m. May 3 at Octavia Books (513 Octavia St., 899-7323). The talk is scheduled in conjunction with the release of his new book The Very Small Home: Japanese Ideas for Living Well in Limited Space (Kodansha International). He also will sign copies of the book at the event.

Brown, head of the Future Design Institute in Tokyo and a professor in Japan, will discuss how Japanese home designs can translate into the American lifestyle and how living in small spaces doesn't have to be cramped.

click to enlarge Pink and purple leopard skin print adorns a sweater and camisole set with beaded flower embellishments from La Doux Boutique.
  • Pink and purple leopard skin print adorns a sweater and camisole set with beaded flower embellishments from La Doux Boutique.
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