Made in the Hudson Valley: Loola Doola Boutique brings one-of-a-kind, handmade clutches to Westchester County

As a black, woman-owned business, "Loola Doola Boutique" is certified as a New York state and Westchester County Minority Women Business Enterprise (MWBE).

Katerina Belales

Jun 18, 2024, 10:09 AM

Updated 34 days ago

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One stitch at a time, Lauren Morris pieces together fabrics at her sewing machine, handmaking one-of-a-kind handbags for her shop, Loola Doola Boutique.
The store opened in the heart of White Plains in 2017. They sell a variety of accessories, including Morris' exclusive collection 'Lauren M. Clutches.' Her love for designing grew as she started to work in the business side of the fashion industry.
"I started working for a major fashion company in Manhattan, and one day I just started doodling," Morris said. "I doodled a bag and the rest is history."
Her love for designing grew during the COVID-19 pandemic, when she had plenty of practice time to sharpen her sewing skills and become her own manufacturer.
"I [was] telling my husband, 'What am I going to do? What am I going to do?' And he was like, 'Do it yourself,'" she said.
That new skill allowed Morris to add a second aspect to her business: Sewing classes, which are held in her studio every weekend. As for keeping her designs fresh and new, Morris said the key is to stay away from trends and work off her unique ideas.
"You want to keep your hand on the industry...but at the same time, you don't want to copy anyone's designs," she explained. "So, anything that was inspirational or I thought was a fun print or something out of the box...that's where my mind went to."
As a black, woman-owned business, "Loola Doola Boutique" is certified as a New York state and Westchester County Minority Women Business Enterprise (MWBE). Between that honor and being featured in Westchester Magazine's "Best of Westchester" edition in 2018, Morris is thrilled to be a representative for minority-owned businesses in her hometown.
"Between 2008 and 2010, my business plan literally said, 'I want to be a woman-owned boutique downtown White Plains,'" she explained. "I grew up in White Plains. I went to school in White Plains…but to be a woman-owned, black-owned business here is very important because there [are] not many that [are] here in downtown White Plains."
As her business continues to grow, Morris is thankful for the support she has received from her community.
"Anyone knows that if they pick up a 'Lauren M. Clutch,' you're going to start a collection," she said. "Every year I have the same folks kind of come back and add to their collection."
Loola Doola Boutique is located at 187 Martine Ave. in White Plains.


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