Nearly two years ago, the now 24-year-old Chelsea Broady took a risk starting an upscale children’s boutique in Downtown San Diego.
She knew the first year of operation was going to be filled with getting to know her surroundings, and making sure the boutique would be known by those surrounding it.
She was told that she would be better suited if she opened the business in a place like La Jolla, instead of Downtown. But Broady wasn’t moved.
She signed the lease to the Fifth Avenue storefront in the Gaslamp District and has never looked back.
For the second year, her store, simply called child., has received accolades from the Gaslamp Quarter Association.
The first was the “Best Storefront and Design” award, and recently child. was awarded the “Best Retail” store by the association.
“I definitely feel like we’ve been embraced by the local community, and we’re really grateful for it,” Broady said.
The clothes found in child. are unlike the wardrobes found in other stores. Broady said she and her mother, Dianna, hand pick every item in the store to be sure it is “the most unique and most interesting children’s clothing you can find.”
The store is located at 542 Fifth Ave., next to a cigar shop and a pub. It is filled with high-quality European and domestic designs in sizes from infant to 6x for boys and infant to 14 for girls.
There are numerous options for shoppers, which range from single mothers looking for the right dress to celebrities with no spending limits to tourists just passing by.
“I think when people come here, they are looking for something special and unique,” Broady said. “I wanted to open something that no one else was doing.”
Broady said she is more confident in her second year of operation. The first year, she said, was filled with a lot of questions and uncertainties about the business itself and the location.
But those questions have been answered and Broady said she is continuing to enjoy running the business of her dreams.