Originally published in the Autumn 2019 issue of 503 Magazine.
One of the newer businesses in town is the brainchild of Jackie Hogle, a Salem native who returned from time away to realize her dream of opening her own store. When she returned, she noticed a change in the caliber of businesses filling in some of the holes of the retail industry.
Filling in the Shopping Gap
“I loved shopping at Nordstrom growing up, and I was so sad to see them close,” Jackie said. “I felt that left a gap in the available products here in Salem that I wanted to fill – especially in the juniors department and the under $100 categories [of] those quality good brands.” Some of those brands include Kut from the Kloth, LUSH, KEDS, LAmade, and Bobeau.
She was confident she had the solution the shopping district needed. “I’ve been looking for an opportunity that’s both something in my wheelhouse, and a good location that I think is profitable [and a business] Salem hasn’t had for a couple of years now.” Revival Clothiers checks all of those boxes.
During her childhood, Jackie dreamt of businesses she would open as an adult. From playing with a toy cash register to drawing up store floor plans in adolescence and taking fashion and business courses through college accompanied by fashion sketching, fashion and business have always been part of her plan.
In Jackie’s eyes, Salem is an incredibly special place. While putting her ideas into motion, she kept the knowledge of Salem’s diverse community in mind – from the education to the health communities, as well as two universities and Chemeketa’s trade school. She also has a deep love for the capitol and spent three years working there.
“Sometimes we get overlooked as a destination. But I think that’s changing. Salem is such a great place because of where it’s located, of course, an hour from the coast and the mountains… but also because we have a really great culture here that appreciates things like music and art and the outdoors simultaneously – and I love those intersections. And also, we have a really big educational and health community and I just appreciate the diversity we have here. I’d love to be able to serve as wide a demographic within Salem as possible.”
Affordable & Quality Clothing
When it came time for her plan to open a store, Jackie knew she wanted to pursue quality basics that could be worn by anyone. “I went to Las Vegas for a trade show before we opened, and I felt every item [for myself] because I wanted to make sure it felt really comfortable and the fabric quality was good. Under the $50 and $100 price point, fabric quality can be an issue. So my goal was really to set us apart and make it worth people’s while to come in to the store in person and be able to feel the items and realize the quality might be superior to what they could find at a big box store or if they order something sight unseen off the internet.” Revival Clothiers also offers an easy return experience.
Current efforts include finding brands that meet Jackie’s quality standards and feature plus sizes. Some of the brands they carry don’t make any sizes above large, and Jackie seeks to carry sizes up to 2X, or at least XL.
“We’re hoping to expand our gift section also because my background is as a gift buyer. I think that will set us apart – being a one stop shop where people can come in and buy a gift and something for themselves, too.” They’re also aspiring to turn the back wall of their retail store into a selfie wall, hopefully creating a popular go-to space in the shopping district.
Jackie’s mind is constantly brainstorming on what would be the best new business venture for certain spaces, and the value they could bring to the shopping district.
“I’m always thinking about uses for empty spaces in Salem. I’ll drive by and I’ll think, ‘you know, that should be another food truck pod or that should be a concert venue, or we need another crepe restaurant there.’”
Some of those venues include “the Pit” or the hole in the ground by Salem Town Center that used to be a bank, and the old Statesman Journal building. “I know there’s plans for it. I think they’re great. I really hope that somebody with more resources than myself can find a way to bring those spaces to life.”
One of her ideas for those spaces is to bring a public market to the capitol, in the style of Seattle’s Pike Place Market, or San Francisco’s Ferry Building.
“Because we have so many makers here in Salem, and being able to rent out small stalls and have a shopping destination where people can come with the intention of looking around and seeing what’s available, would be a great tourist draw for people coming in from out of town.” It would be a great attraction to Salem as a shopping district, and to aid craftsmen who might not be able to afford an entire storefront. “The public market is high on my wish list for Salem,” she said.
Since Revival Clothier’s opening in March, Jackie has experienced support from the local business community, and joined the Salem Area Chamber of Commerce. “The Chamber has been great. I still have my ribbon from the ribbon cutting tied to the door of my office, because that was a really special moment – kind of a lifelong dream come true. It’s [also] been good press and great networking, and I think it’s provided some visibility and traffic in the store as well. I’m really thankful.
“I think the public sometimes thinks, ‘what a risk Salem is, it’s kind of a touch-and-go with businesses,’ and I agree. It has been in the past, but I think I found other business owners to be welcoming and supportive, and overall really encouraging. We’re all on the same team as a part of the Salem shopping district. I think we realized that the more shops there are for people to go into, the more people will come down to see us as a district to walk around and see the different shops. It would build more cross traffic for all of us.”
Want to learn more? Visit Revival Clothiers at 156 Liberty St. N.E. or online at https://revivalclothiers.com/