Delilah: A New Gem in the Glebe

An attention-grabbing boutique has scooted into the Glebe, just as the road construction crew clears out.

On the corner of Bank St. and Third Ave., a baby pink scooter sits in the window of Delilah, a new shop owned by Eva Cooper. “I wanted to have something that gets people to look…It works. It brings people in,” Cooper said of the scooter from Scooteretti, a dealership on Dalhousie St.

A huge floral mural covers the side of Delilah, which is named after Cooper’s 10-year-old daughter. Inside the boutique, a tranquil atmosphere awaits the Glebe shopper. Chic, yet multifunctional clothing items are displayed in amongst the most desirable, high-quality leather boots for Fall. A neutral design aesthetic allows the products to stand out.

Cooper sells items from brands, based in Europe and North America, with a focus on high-quality garments and footwear for both men and women. “We deal with suppliers that really take pride in their products,” she said.

Environmentally friendly shoes and boots by El Naturalista, from Spain, are made with recyclable and biodegradable materials. Patagonia, an active/outerwear company from the United States, is another earth-friendly brand stocked at Delilah. “Those companies that are making an [environmental] effort are producing a better quality garment,” said Cooper.

Cooper’s favourite line is Sandwich, from Switzerland and the Netherlands. Sandwich is a collection of classic women’s wear with a twist. The garments have a sophisticated European-sensibility. Each piece seems to have a unique quirk, such as interesting tucks in a skirt, multi-layering on sweaters or folded fabric appendages.

Delilah is the sister-store of a similar venture in Wakefield Que., Boutique Burro Borracho, which is also owned by Cooper. “It’s in my blood. My great-grandmother owned a store in the ’30s and 40’s.”

Cooper has a background in white-water rafting, working as a nature guide, social work and sales representation. She studied outdoor recreation at Lakehead University and social work at the University of Calgary. She later owned a sales rep. agency with her husband. Cooper said her experience working with a variety of people gave her the knowledge she needs to run her boutique. “I’m just a people person,” she said.

Cooper acts as a personal stylist for her customers by helping them put together outfits suitable for their lives. She said she often dresses women re-entering the workforce, who have been on maternity leave.“I don’t think of myself is a fashionista or anything like that…A woman loves her favourite jeans and a great funky top. Who cares if we wear the same jeans all week but we have different boots and different tops to go with it?”

Cooper said her store will stand out from other boutiques in Ottawa because of her staff’s expertise on the products sold at Delilah and their excellent customer service. “We really try to get to know our customer.”

The staff at Delilah don’t use pressure tactics, which allows customers to take their time shopping. Special orders can be made and Cooper offers inter-store transfers between her two locations.

Cooper’s method seems to be working. She said 50 per cent of customers have returned for multiple visits since the store opened, Oct. 4. “I’m having troubles keeping fully stocked,” she said.