A great deal of time and effort goes into opening a small business. Broad Street’s newest stand-out shop is no different. After six months of hard work, what started as an idea has become monumental.
Monument Shoe Boutique opened on Oct. 3rd at 823 W. Broad St. The shop’s creative director, Herman Asberry, had a goal of creating new staples in the community. Asberry and co-owner Rashawn Davis designed the store with the purpose of having a customer walk in and feel like family. With a vibrantly-lit interior and the game “NBA 2k15” on the Xbox One, the store’s creative design completes Asberry’s vision of a concept boutique.
“To me a concept boutique is a store where the idea of the status quo is challenged,” Asberry said. “We don’t cater to one walk of life or lifestyle. We offer pieces to compliment any lifestyle.”
The shop’s owners created Monument to be a specialty shop with a focus on footwear and clothing, as well as creating a steady clientele.
“Nobody who comes in our store will forget the experience,” said stockroom manager Derrick Buskey.
The boutique carries an exclusive shoe collection meant to satisfy any customer who steps inside. The store’s walls are lined with stylish clothing from brands such as 10Deep, SSUR and Kennedy, in addition to denim from local manufacturer Shockoe Denim.
The shop’s centerpiece in the back of the store is named the Vault, where only premiere footwear is displayed such as the Fly Kix ATL X FILA USA Original Fitness “Peach State” collaboration, and Nike Air Huarache.
“Even if described perfectly, (the Vault) still would not produce the same effect as looking at it does,” Asberry said.
Asberry’s relationships with different shoe vendors allows the shop to offer sneakers that would be difficult to find otherwise.
“You won’t find the Peach State FILA’s in any other store in Virginia,” Asberry said. “I know some of our vendors’ reps and associates, so that creates a tight network.”
Aware of the competition close by, Monument owners maintain a relationship with everyone in the local market.
“The competition is friendly, everyone has a space,” Asberry said. “The (Wavy Kicks) managers visited us the other day. It’s all love, we’re all in the city and we’re doing our part.”
The store’s exclusive collection is available in time for students to pick up a pair of Nike basketball shoes and test their skills on the Cary Street Gym courts. Connecting to VCU’s innovative culture, Monument’s owners are hoping to expand their brand.
“Richmond has become an epicenter for fashion, music and arts,” Asberry said. “What we are doing is trying to help usher in a stronger push into the more contemporary.”
Monument is open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and from noon to 6 p.m. on Sundays at 823 W. Broad St.