Broadway’s old state liquor store location will again be empty. Tatyana Boutique, the Las Vegas-based women’s fashion chain stripped of its right to use the Bettie Page name this summer, has suddenly closed its Capitol Hill store.
A sign posted at 400 Broadway E inelegantly shared the news over the weekend. We have not yet heard back from company officials about the abrupt closure. Thanks to tipster Tim for bringing it to our attention.
UPDATE: The company’s co-founder Jan Glaser tells CHS that the closure is not part of a wider pullback by the company. “We just opened in Toronto,” Glaser said. Instead, Glaser said a lack of Broadway foot traffic was to blame. “From the beginning, traffic was an issue there. Even before the name change,” Glaser said. The entrepreneur said he may be looking for a new place in Seattle for a Tatyana store. CHS suggested E Pike below Broadway. Let us know if you have any ideas for Glaser.
The closure marks the second Broadway business to close retail operations on the street after issues with attracting customers. Last week, The Confectional announced it was closing its Broadway retail lobby as it works out a new lease to possibly continue running its kitchen from the space. The maker of mini-cheesecakes was also known for its anti-$15 minimum wage stance.
We’ve asked Glaser a follow-up about whether Seattle’s changing minimum wage had any bearing on the Tatyana decision.
The boutique opened as Bettie Page Clothing in the former home of Broadway’s state liquor store in spring 2013. The 3,400 square-foot space sat empty since for nearly a year when the winning bidder in the state’s auction of rights to operate the liquor store backed out of the deal.
“Since a majority of our current standing stores are located in high tourist areas, in speaking and interacting with our customers, we found that many were visiting from the Seattle area,” a company spokesperson told us about the plans for Broadway at the time.
By summer of 2014, however, the Mad Men and rockabilly-powered retailer was struggling with a significant legal setback — the loss of its name. Stripped of its right to invoke the spirit of the pin-up legend, the eight-year-old chain of just over a dozen stores changed its branding to honor founder Tatyana Khomyakova who started the company along with entrepreneur husband Jan Glaser. The new branding went up on Broadway in May 2014. The company was reportedly engaged in a countersuit for breach of contract and punitive damages.
Fashion on Broadway has been a mixed bag. The Gap survived for ages alongside the surviving Urban Outfitters. Hot Topic is dead and gone but UO and American Apparel continue to serve. In 2013, CHS reported that rising rents were forcing the closure of Broadway Boutique as owner Lisa Chang consolidated her club fashion at the surviving Trendy Wendy. Aprie continues to offer local fashion at its Capitol Hill location and fellow indie Mishu is in the middle of its fourth year on Broadway while vintage is still a big deal at Red Light and Crossroads Trading.
We’ve asked the Tatyana Boutique company for more information about the Broadway closure and whether it is part of a wider shutdown by the chain. City and county records don’t indicate any significant work planned for the building and there is no record of a sale by the longtime landowner.