Fashion boutique’s appeal to ‘Shop local, wear local’

Elaine Tunnard outside Sheila Tiller Fashions, Market Place, Long Sutton.

Elaine Tunnard outside Sheila Tiller Fashions, Market Place, Long Sutton.

Women from South Holland looking to stand out at Royal Ascot next week would be wise to visit a family-owned Long Sutton fashion shop.

Sheila Tiller Fashions in Market Place is fully behind the Guardian’s year-long Shop Local, Eat Local, Play Local campaign in support of independent businesses serving Crowland, Holbeach, Spalding and Long Sutton.

The boutique has been a fixture in Long Sutton for 35 years ever since Sheila Tiller decided to go self-employed as a 40-year-old at the same time as the Winter of Discontent cast its shadow over Britain.

Sheila’s daughter Elaine Tunnard, who went from Spalding High School straight into her mum’s business in 1980, said: “We take great care in making sure our customers are fitted perfectly, from top to toe, and to offer a specialist service for whatever occasion they want to go to.

“I like to think of our clothes as contemporary fashion, not too way out but something that’s individual, classy and suitable for a wide variety of age groups.”

At one stage, Sheila and Elaine ran as many as five shops across Lincolnshire and Norfolk.

But as the demands of changing fashions grew more varied, the pair decided to concentrate their efforts on Long Sutton, with separate fashion and shoe shops, but both in Market Place.

Elaine said: “We quite happily draw our customers from a 60-mile radius and we have people who come down for the day to buy their entire season of clothes.

“People who used to live in the area but have moved away still come to us from Harrogate and Worcester twice a year because they are used to us and we make shopping easy for those who don’t like shopping.”

Elaine proudly confessed to being a supporter of independent businesses.

She added: “Every town or village has to have a community feel.”




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