SoKno Throwback and Threads, 906 Sevier Avenue, Knoxville, September 2022 (Photo by Heather Ryerson)
(Ed. Note: Today’s article and photographs (except two) are courtesy of guest writer Heather Ryerson.)
After years in the medical field, DeAnne Thomas McLemore was sidelined by an injury that would be the end of that phase of her career. Not sure what to do next, she began exploring options. Having always had a passion for clothing and trends, she was encouraged to open a boutique to share her fashion savvy with the Knoxville community. Introducing SoKno Throwback and Threads a fashion boutique for women of all ages and sizes (small to 3X) at a price point that won’t break the bank! DeAnne had never owned her own business but worked with her mother and father over their 51 years of operating McLemore Florist in South Knoxville. From her parents, she learned the value of dedication to your goals and the importance of stellar customer service. This experience in addition to the continued support of her mother, Jeannine, DeAnne knew she had to pursue this new dream. Jeannine was at the shop when I stopped in and I saw firsthand what a great duo this mother/daughter team make.
As she searched for locations to rent, she noticed a property owned by developer and leasing agent, Tim Duff, on Sevier Ave. who has been very invested in the growth of this area. As one of DeAnne’s goals is to highlight South Knox, this seemed like the perfect place to do it. She signed a lease and got to work on the set up and design inside. Apart from hanging drywall, DeAnne and her mother did all the work to get the interior ready.
Prior to opening, DeAnne needed a name for her new adventure. SoKno was a given being located in South Knox and wanting to bring business and attention to the area. Originally thinking she would do part consignment in addition to the other retail, the name “Throwback” was discussed. However, she ultimately decided not to go in that direction, but liked the name so much that she stuck with it!
Once the name was established, next came business license, inventory and setting up her online store where customers began purchasing right away. Now they have the option of continuing to purchase online or visiting the store to see their items in person.
While the shop is small, they made great use of each space and even have a lovely dressing room area to try on your chosen apparel. The dark gray and soft accents inside are calm and sophisticated. DeAnne handpicked each item to compliment the space.
DeAnne’s mission for the boutique is “to utilize the power of fashion and fun to help women express their confidence and individuality- while standing out!” She said she wanted to make an environment where women of every age and size could feel beautiful and fashionable at an affordable price point.
The clothing is excellent quality and style with beautiful hues and textures, including a new line of leather that is on point! Fall is in full swing inside SoKno Throwback and Threads! She also has all your gameday outfit options front and center in the shop and many accessories to compliment the look you create. Not sure what looks best? Just ask! DeAnne can help you put together an outfit that you will love.
Her most popular item is the Judy Blue brand of jeans out of Judy Blue Jeans in Los Angeles. These award-winning jeans are soft, stretchy and a comfortable fit. Being one of the only retailers in the area able to get her hands on these, they sell out quickly!
SoKno Throwback and Threads has only been open for about 6 weeks. DeAnne is still learning her customer base and has been a one woman show. However, she has already had such great success that she is looking to hire soon and hopes to host boutique parties and from there, open a second boutique!
She also let me in on a little secret as to what her customers and the community can look forward to soon from her shop. DeAnne is working with another L.A. designer, Carole Christian, to bring a fashion show to South Knox! From L.A to SoKno will be the theme. She is looking forward to bringing this exciting event to Sevier Ave.
Keep an eye on her social media here and here to keep up with all the new inventory and happenings at SoKno Throwback and Threads!