For nearly two decades, Abejas Boutique owner Christina Mitchell has infused the Houston retail scene with her luxuriously casual take on fashion, offering a world class mix of exclusive lines at her Rice Village area boutique. Now she’s expanding her vision to a new location at 2517 South Boulevard, breathing her own sense of interior design and hospitality to a completely renovated free-standing, mid-century modern building, expected to open in mid-August 2016.
Mitchell’s exquisite eye and unflagging determination have made Abejas a must-shop destination for locals who appreciate the array of beautiful clothing, shoes, jewelry and accessories chosen for the store’s cross-generational shoppers. Mitchell stocks Abejas with versatile pieces that seamlessly transitions from day-to-night, paying special attention to fabrics ideal for Houston’s weather, giving customers options that are both modern in feel and classic in look.
In the midst of planning for the boutique, Mitchell was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer and while receiving treatment, she continued to cultivate her plan for the new location, while also nurturing her health and focusing on her family. The end result is a healthy Christina Mitchell and an exciting and vibrant new Abejas as it approaches its 20th anniversary.
She’s taking her experiences and pouring them into the building where the Abejas concept has evolved from a comfortable and elegant boutique to a community destination for customers to sip, socialize, nosh, shop and linger.
“Customers get fed, relax a bit more and enjoy the visit. Something so rare in today’s fast-paced world,” Mitchell said.
Mitchell is creating that sense of communal connection with respected interior designer Barbara Hill. Hill’s work includes the Marfa House and has been featured in Dwell, as well as, The New York Times.
The 3,000 square-foot building channels an industrial-chic feel imbued with natural light and anchored by concrete floors, exposed beams and ductwork. Simple white walls create an art gallery feel, showcasing Abejas’ curated designer collections.
“The space imparts the feeling of being in a great friend’s fabulous home,” Mitchell said. “A space that we can share fashion and conversation. You won’t want to leave.”
Mitchell is furthering her inviting vision with the addition of a mid-century furnished lounge area by the dressing rooms, a crushed gravel outdoor patio area, complete with comfortable seating for lingering over coffee or wine. An open kitchen concept with a stainless glass-front refrigerator and commercial espresso machine and a 10-foot long harvest table with communal seating completes the at-home feel.
Mitchell is also reaching into the local culinary community, working with local chefs, bringing in fresh baked goods and salads for customers. The addition of an urban chicken coop is just one more element of her community-driven plan.
From the building renovation to the collections carried at Abejas, discerning taste is at the heart of all Mitchell’s ideas and decisions. Mitchell’s style perspective is simple and simply stunning, allowing for customers to take her pieces and create their own sense of self. The dressing rooms are kitted out with jewelry and accessories ideal for playing with looks for all occasions.
Abejas is stocked with clothing, accessories and jewelry that truly inspires, much the same way as a thought-provoking piece of art. Mitchell considers complementary colors, textures and fabrics and customer’s lifestyles creating the perfect alchemy of sublime style and substance. The result is a magical aesthetic that has attracted a stellar line of artisans and designers who share this vision and exclusively offer their collections at Abejas including Officine Creative, Giada Forte, Nan Fusco, Faliero Sarti, Spinelli Kilcollin, Utzon, Marsell, Yves Salomon, Sibel Saral, Golden Goose and Filu Hats.
Information and images provided by Zulu Creative.