Not every “Verona” business is actually located in Verona: Kendra Lanzo’s is nestled in the heart of Watchung Plaza in her hometown of Montclair.
Lanzo, a Verona resident for almost 10 years, opened Thread seven years ago. Entering the store, it is clear that Lanzo has recreated the look and feel of New England resort boutiques, but much closer to home. Thread’s fashion styles range from preppy to elegant casual, so there’s always something available for that last-minute dress or outfit.
While Thread is relatively new, Lanzo is not new to the retail clothing business. For more than 11 years, Lanzo worked in a Montclair boutique where she had been trained and mentored in all aspects of running a small retail clothing store. She learned the techniques and details in buying inventory, displaying clothing, scheduling employees and managing the finances of owning one’s own business. As a result, she loved the business and knew that at some point owning her own store was both an important and attainable goal. Thus, six months after learning that the previous business in her current location was for sale, Lanzo opened her doors.
It’s clear from being in the boutique and speaking with Lanzo that she loves her store. Beyond that, she has developed relationships with her customers over the years and thrives on that interaction. Located on Watchung Avenue, she is constantly meeting new people, and greeting her regulars, as they are shopping in Thread or other local stores. What is Lanzo’s favorite part of owning a clothing boutique? “I love dressing people,” she says.
Thread is home to more than 20 brands of clothing and accessories, with more arriving as part of the spring inventory. Some of the most popular brands among her customers are Vineyard Vines, Karina (dresses for “every-body”), Lysse Leggings (thick leggings with control top), and Douglas Paquette.
Whether stopping in the store with a specific need, or looking for another set of eyes when trying a new style, Lanzo acts as a personal shopper for her customers who need it. Thread, in both its design and clothing offerings, is an escape from typical shopping; and as the days slowly begin to lengthen, a glimpse into the warmer days ahead.
Currently, the store houses primarily winter and early spring apparel. In April, just in time for spring break, the resort wear line will be available and Thread will have cover ups, flip flops, bags, shorts and t-shirts.
Thread is open 7 days a week: Sunday, 10-2, Monday, 10-5, Tuesday-Friday 10-6 and Saturday from 10-5. It is located at 123 Watchung Avenue, and the store phone is 973-509-8892.