Fashions evolve, but style lasts forever, and Beetees’ style has certainly made its mark on Nelson.
Beetees, the fabulous women’s fashion store in the heart of Nelson, had its beginnings in Motueka in 2005. The co-owners Lorraine and Glen Beattie were living in Nelson and Lorraine was the Fashion Manager at the local H and J Smiths.
When it closed down, the couple bought it and decided to play on their own surname and call it ‘Beetees’, which they ran for ten years in Motueka until 2015. During this time, they had also opened up a Beetees Store in Nelson, but all the commuting began to take its toll. They then shut the shop in Motueka and decided to focus their time and energy on the Beetees Nelson store, which is going really well on Trafalgar St, after relocating from Bridge St.
Although Beetees is strongly affiliated with some fantastic New Zealand labels, it also prides itself on its diversity and avid focus on European branding. “I trend towards the European Fashion Houses,” says Lorraine.
“We are also involved in a group that includes owner operator shops throughout New Zealand, which gives us the power to put forward ideas to develop with two designers that go to Europe and South America twice a year.”
Glen says Two-thirds of their products comes from their buying group.
“The designers buy overseas, come back, then members of our group go to Christchurch, change it around, and work it into the style of our group.
“All of the shops in the group are vastly different style-wise. We have a bit of a say in the design of the clothes,” adds Glen. “And the fabrication choices, particularly the patterns – if we want a longer or shorter sleeve put in, that can happen,” says Lorraine. “I rely a lot on visuals from overseas, I look at a lot of magazines. If I Iike it, I’ll go with it.”
You’ll see a wide range of gorgeous fabrics at Beetees. Linens, cottons, viscose, merino, and so much more. “We love good quality, natural fabrics where possible.”
A lot of people may not realise that viscose is a natural derivative of wood pulp and flax, so it’s man-made but a natural product. For certain clothing items, we do deal in Polyester, simply for the bright colours, the design and the patterns.
Beetees has one of the largest ranges of womenswear in the Nelson region – including well-known brands such as Marco Polo, Yarra Trail, Vassalli, Foil, Memo, Preen, Lemontree, Elm, Scottie, Classified, Esplanade, Soyaconcept, Democracy, Mirrus, Enhance Accessories, Assign and Zoe.
It’s an exciting time to visit the Beetees store on Trafalgar Street. The shop has a superb range of dresses, skirts, jackets, coats, vest, trousers, jeans, pants, leggings, shirts, tops, cardigans, jerseys, jumpers, knitwear, merinos, and accessories.
Lorraine travels around a lot and is impressed with what she sees Nelson women wearing. “They really know how to put it together, and are quite discerning about what they want. You see a lot of classic upmarket styles worn in Nelson.”
A stylish dresser herself, Lorraine is no newcomer to the fashion world, with extensive experience spanning over thirty years in the industry. “I got taught by the best in the rag trade – they taught me how to arrange displays, put garments together, how to work the colours and so on. I did a lot of modelling in my early days, which was very lucrative. I still model if we have an in-house fashion event; we have 18-year-old models right through to 65 years or older. Older models inspire people; they make you realise that hey we can wear that look without looking ridiculous! Some of the top models these days on the international scene are in their 70s with grey hair and they look absolutely stunning; it gives people the confidence that as we age, life still goes on! Ultimately, women dress to suit themselves; it’s all about style.”
Lorraine adores the summer fashions. “I enjoy the colours and natural fabrics of summer. The linens and cottons are so brilliant to wear in the warmer temperatures especially through the heady Christmas / New Year times. As much as the summer garments are more simplistic than winter, the styles are really quite divisive and there is a design that suits everyone whether it be a dress, pants, top, or jacket. We know ‘colours’ here in the shop; we know what suits, and at Beetees we give free consultations.” Glen says they have several clients who come to them each season and say “fit us out please”. “We love it because they trust us,” says Lorraine. “It’s awesome to have someone come in and say, ‘I was out with friends, and I felt really dull, I need to move on.”
We will really push people out of their comfort zone, within reason, but not ridiculously. We are just everyday girls who enjoy playing with clothes, and we love dressing up people; love seeing people feel good about themselves.”
Beetees’ main point of difference on the local fashion front is that Lorraine and Glen are “able to have a say in our product, in the design,” says Glen. “Our quality is always good. We have the ability when something’s not quite right, to get it right straight away.”
It’s not just local Nelsonians who are discovering Beetees, the stylish women’s fashion store in downtown Nelson, is also being frequented by ladies visiting from all over New Zealand, in particular from Christchurch and with Aucklanders coming on board lately too.
“Once people have shopped here, they usually always come back.”
If you are thinking about updating your wardrobe, why not have a free consultation with the team at Beetees?
If you haven’t got much time, you can always shop online at www.beetees.co.nz. Beetees already has a huge V.I.P database, and today you can also sign up to become a Beetees VIP card holder. This will entitle you to 15 % off the normal retail price all year round! Discover a whole new world of fabulous women’s fashion at Beetees
240 Trafalgar Street, Nelson. phone (03) 546 8700 www.beetees.co.nz