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‘We were nervous, excited and proud’ - Husband and wife owners of Vanilla fashion launch online in lockdown

PUBLISHED: 11:15 19 May 2020 | UPDATED: 11:15 19 May 2020

The couple who run Vanilla, Anita and Abhi Vadhir. Pic: Archant

The couple who run Vanilla, Anita and Abhi Vadhir. Pic: Archant

A couple who have run a successful women’s clothing store for more than 20 years in Norwich have used lockdown to launch it online.

Vanilla in Ipswich Road, Norwich. Pic: ArchantVanilla in Ipswich Road, Norwich. Pic: Archant

A couple who’ve run a successful women’s clothing store for more than 20 years in Norwich have used lockdown to launch it online.

Vanilla, with a store in Ipswich Road, run by Anita and Abhi Vadhir, has now gone online to continue serving its customers.

Previously they had chosen not to sell online, priding themselves on face to face service to loyal shoppers who have stayed with them since they started in 1998. But after the coronavirus forced them to close their beloved store, albeit temporarily, they decided to take the plunge.

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The website vanillanorwich.co.uk builds on the store’s USP which is all about building an entire outfit for customers with their stylist and fellow director Louise Lace helping bring together clothing and accessories to suit a person’s individual style and shape.

The store, founded on the principle of bringing unique clothing from a range of designers at affordable prices, now offers that same ‘Vanilla Loves’ range of items they have picked as wardrobe favourites online.

They have also divided the site into sections from jeans to jewellery as well as different designers and a biog on them too from Grace & Mila to Ichi.

Although Vanilla haven’t been online, they’ve used social media such as Instagram to promote their business, photographing outfits for sale. But now you can tap the products – and buy them.

The Vadhirs posted: “The new Vanilla store went live; we were nervous, excited and proud.

“Thank you all so much for placing your orders, everyone’s support, comments, likes and messages have been received with heartfelt love.

“We love every one of our customers and the support we have received from the Vanilla community in these difficult times has been nothing short of amazing. We’ve been thinking of ways to return this goodwill and how we bring Vanilla to you.”

The couple founded Vanilla after negotiating a rent-free period in a dilapidated supermarket in Ipswich Road and are still there today.

But it hasn’t all been plain sailing.

In 2000 they opened a second shop in Sprowston Road which at it height had 16 staff but in 2012 they struggled in a difficult economic climate and took the sad decision to close that store.

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