A new boutique in downtown New Albany seeks to make a difference in the lives of women who wear plus sizes.
Hey Nezzie Boutique is named after Jennie Oglesby’s grandmother, who passed away in her 90s.
“I’ve named it after her because she loved fashion,” said Oglesby. “She always loved to look great.”
Oglesby remembers shopping with her grandmother in downtown New Albany as a child.
Located at 137 W. Bankhead St., Hey Nezzie Boutique is more than just a clothing store. It is a place where curvy women can feel comfortable being themselves, said Oglesby, whose husband, Derek, is the owner of the business.
Throughout her life, Oglesby has had a curvy build and always struggled to find clothes she liked growing up.
“It’s really hard to find cute plus-size clothing,” Oglesby said. “I’ve lived it for 45 years of being curvy.”
There needed to be store for curvy girls, she said. So she decided to open Hey Nezzie to help other women find curvy clothes they like.
She tears up when she thinks about the challenges curvy women face when it comes to buying clothes. She said the “struggle is real” and likes the reaction women make when they put on clothes and feel confident. It is rewarding to see the excitement on their faces when they find something they look good in and feel good in, she said.
“It’s hard for some people to understand that,” Oglesby said.
Hey Nezzie only carries curvy sizes and sells sizes ranging from XL to 3X or 14 to 24 in jeans.
“I try to be a full line curvy boutique,” Oglesby said.
Some of the items sold at the business include bralettes, tank tops, tops, sweaters, leggings, bell bottoms, jeans, graphic T-shirts, purses, jewelry, hats, dress extenders and slip extenders.
Prior to the storefront opening in New Albany, Hey Nezzie had been open for two years online.
The Holiday Open House that was recently held in New Albany went well at Hey Nezzie with a lot of people coming in to check out the new store. People were excited that New Albany has a store like this, she said. So far the reaction to the store has been very positive, she added.
It’s nice for curvy women to be able to have lots of clothing options, Oglesby noted. For the most part, the clothing sold at Hey Nezzie is everyday wear that could be worn to work, holiday parties or a date night, she said. The clothing can be worn by high school girls to senior citizens.
She thinks a lot of people are excited that there is a store that caters to them. She said she feels as though Hey Nezzie is filling a niche in New Albany. She said she knew there was a need for this kind of business here.
“It’s basically been a dream of mine to give back in some sort of way,” she said.
A person’s face changes when they feel really good about what they’re wearing, Oglesby said. The goal is to make the women as comfortable as possible while they are in the store shopping.
Normally, curvy women can only find a few things to try on when they go out shopping, but they have many options at Hey Nezzie Boutique, she said. Curvy girls rarely feel special when it comes to shopping, and many of them don’t like to shop because they don’t get a lot of clothing choices, she said.
She said she knows what it’s like to be a mom and have a teenage daughter who can’t dress like all the other girls. She knows the “heartache” that comes when a person can’t wear what everyone else is wearing.
“I know what that’s like because I’ve been that way myself,” Oglesby said.
She recalls that she could not wear a popular brand of jeans in high school because they did not fit her. Now she wants to help people with her store. She said she understands body types and how to pick clothes that will look good on people.
Oglesby is excited to be in downtown New Albany, saying, “I like the busyness of this town. Everyone has been extremely nice and welcoming.”
Hey Nezzie is a place where curvy women can feel comfortable shopping and find good clothing that is affordable and stylish, she added.
“I know there’s a need for it,” Oglesby said.