“An heirloom is something of value passed from one generation to the next,” says Hanna Herrington Lavergne, HerringStone’s Lafayette owner and second generation to the fashion boutique.
Come April, Lavergne and her mother, Debbie Herrington, and aunt, Cindy Stone, the duo who opened the Monroe location years ago, will be passing on a legacy of trending clothing, business sense and a warm atmosphere to HeirLoom with Claire Kostelka at the helm.
“HerringStone's is nothing short of a valuable family business. The store is a culmination of dreams, passion, and hard work. When I saw my opportunity to help expand Debbie's, Cindy's, and Hanna's dream of growing HerringStone's yet again, I jumped at the opportunity,” Kostelka says. “But this time, I wanted to help create a store where shoppers can feel the sense of value that HerringStone's has built over the years. Therefore, I did some research and came across the word ‘heirloom.’”
Kostelka knows the HerringStone’s brand well thanks to years at both locations. She spent her days after school at the Monroe store before heading to UL to study education and working between classes in River Ranch.
“I taught for a year and a half. But, I love retail,” Kostelka says. “And I was thinking about opening a store.”
Lavergne says people have asked for years about a new HerringStone’s location in Acadiana, especially in the booming area of Youngsville where traffic is no joke and there seems to be a hefty dose of HerringStone’s core customer. The fit wasn’t right (Lavergne had concerns about placing two stores close together and expanding without another family member to do so) until the recent development of the HeirLoom brand. For the first time the HerringStone's crew saw a way to maintain the family brand while branching out.
“It just all worked. HerringStone’s Two Sisters doesn’t make sense if we [Herringtons] aren’t there. But, Heirloom allows us to do it. Claire can go to market with us and be the buyer, and it’s the same type of concept but will have different pieces and brands. It will be like the Lafayette and Monroe store all in one. When we saw the development we thought we could make this work and if not us, it was going to be somebody else,” Lavergne says.
The Heirloom location, for example, will carry Free People. It’s a beloved brand from the Monroe location that isn’t carried in Lafayette because of too-close competition. The distance to Youngsville will allow HeirLoom to grow brands that Herringstone’s Lafayette hasn’t.
But Lavergne and the family have no intention of stopping at the Youngsville location.
“This is just the beginning,” she says.