I remember the first time I walked into Ouimillie. My husband and I was celebrating our two year anniversary at the Liberty Hotel. We decided to explore the super quaint neighborhood, Beacon Hill. This boutique was the first space we walked into.
I was instantly captivated by the stunning photographs on the walls. Which led me to the explore the fun pieces Ouimillie had to offered. I thought everything was very cool and trendy. I was also impressed by how the owner combined art and fashion is such a seamless way.
I hope you enjoy getting to know Millicent Cutler, because it has been a pleasure for me.
What is the story behind your name, “Ouimillie”?
Ouimillie came out a of an intense weekend with my aunt, Judy Walker. She is a graphic designer. In a creative brainstorming session, she helped me on the concept of opening a home goods pop up shop in Boston. The name, is a mash up of “yes” in French and my childhood nickname, Milly. Who doesn't like the possibility of a “yes”? The name Milly is a reference of someone lovable or one you might find sweet : ) - It's about trust, it's about taking little chances, to being open to ideas, and having fun! Ouimillie! I love the way it looks, the roundness on the ends with the i(s) and l(s) through the middle.
I had been traveling a lot to Paris to be with friends who live there. I quickly noticed so much eye candy my interior design clients in Boston would love to have in their homes. I was obsessed with companies I met at the big home design show, Maison et Objet. Brands from all over the world, the M&O also features a lot of personal accessories companies as well, so of course we went with jewelry and leather goods along with the home decor.
I know you started off as an interior designer. How did you get into fashion?
While buying in Paris at M&O for the inception of Ouimillie, my favorite brands immediately were the Danish companies like: “by Lassen and Gubi.” The Danish fashion started to really pop out at me. I fell in love with the culture, the style, and the brands for fashion. Baum und Pferdgarten was my ultimate favorite. Three year later, Danish fashion is not to miss and they are the leaders of style right now. Copenhagen Fashion week is a true blast.
I love how your space embraces creativity. You encourage people to push the envelope a bit in regards of fashion. How important is it for you to offer pieces that are different and well made?
It's everything! When you see small brands or designers that really have something, it's really hard to pass up featuring them. It's all in the stories. The reasons why they design, their inspirations, and the process. I gobble this up. I want to know it all, and want to sell that.
You are a mom of three. How do you balance work and family life?
Take every day as it comes and plan ahead. I rise early and stay up late when it serves me. Though right now, I'm going through a self care phase. Running a business has taken a toll and the kids (they always come first), for the last few years I've been third in line. Things are beginning to shift and balance is forming! I am so lucky to be this far. I know I'm blessed, as hectic as it has been, I love every minute of it.
What is your number one advice for anyone who is looking to own their own business someday?
Grow slow. Take your time and understand fully the brand you think you'd like to build and never give up. Initially you'll be in problem solving mode all the time, you'll need to find ways to fit the pieces of the business into place for proper growth. Enjoy it! All of the experiences are so amazing when you run a company. Lastly, and very importantly, recognize the many kind souls that help you, it's a long process and every person working with you is making your dream come true.
I love any space that inspires me to be better in all levels, especially in fashion. Ouimillie does that for me. :) P.S.- you don’t want to miss out on the new developments coming fall. Stay tuned! EEEK!