Since first opening Shop n’Drop boutique four years ago, May Al-Essa went on to represent more than a hundred different brands at her boutique, including Tucker, Rachel Pally, Made Her Think, and Wildfox. Crafting a stylish haven for local fashionistas in Kuwait, it’s no wonder that the brainchild behind this space is an absolute style maker.
With WildFox being a local favorite brand, May takes pride in being able to exclusively represent this hip brand since she first opened. When asked about her favorite part of her job, she quickly replied, “I love doing the buying, that’s definitely my favorite part!” Still, May also handles all aspects of her business, from operations to marketing, ensuring that her boutique always remains looked after.
“I started my boutique as a result of my shopaholic tendencies. I had to shop everyday, especially online, and I always suffered with finding the right size. From there, I picked up the habit of buying the right items. My love for certain brands, after years of shopping, led me here.” The next she knew, she was off to LA to meet with brand managers, boutique owners, and fashion houses to get her favorite brands to Kuwait. “It went smoothly, so I had to do it!”
Originally, May’s concept revolved around catering to women at home. Upon visiting the boutique today, you’ll still see the kitschy, portable wardrobe on display. Once upon a time, the same portable wardrobe would visit your home, bringing with it the trendiest styles and accessories. After a while, however, her customers wanted to visit the store more often to see more selections, hence dropping by to visit this style-savvy space. In the future, May plans to include online shopping as a service alongside bringing us the latest styles from hip and cool designers.
So, what should you expect to see at Shop n’Drop? An eclectic mix of casual-chic and contemporary designs, hand-selected by yours truly, along with funky jewelry selections like pinky rings in rose gold, yellow and white gold, long and flowy rosary necklaces, and don’t be surprised if you see your mom’s friend shopping there! Hip local fashionistas aged 16-40 shop here, May even carries a stylish children’s line, Jetsetter, with couture inspired slogans and designs that every fashionable mother would want to splurge on for her little one.
When asked about the hardest part about managing so many brands in one place, she commented, “ Well, the traveling is the best part, by far! The hardest part is managing everything at once, but thanks to social media, I’m finding it much easier to connect with my customer base via Instagram.”
Does fashion ‘make’ the person or does the person ‘make’ fashion?
I truly believe that the person ‘makes’ the fashion. Not everything fashionable and ‘in’ suits everyone; hence, it’s that sense of style that a person has and creates from head to toe which later on evolves into fashion! Therefore, it’s the process of making.
How would you describe your style?
Classic with a touch of edginess.
How do you get inspiration for your style?
As cheesy as it may sound, my true inspiration would be my mum!
What does it take to become a style innovator?
You have to be creative, imaginative and foremost fearless! Also, you always have to be on top of the latest fashion trends.
What’s exciting right now in fashion?
The fashion trend that’s really exciting me right now would have to be the cape trend. No one has to worry about his or her weight this season!
Who or what has been your greatest fashion influence?
I would have to say Carrie Bradshaw, A.K.A Sarah Jessica Parker, is one of my greatest influences at the moment. However, the 60’s fashion icons are my favorites!
Who are your favorite emerging designers, and what is it that you love about them?
Most of the designers that I carry at my store are emerging and I would consider them my favorites. Speaking of other emerging designers, Jason Wu and Alexander Wang are the best due to their simplicity in their designs.
What is the highlight of your ‘style’ career?
Seeing my baby, boutique, growing with the help of the most amazing fashionistas locally and regionally.
Every fashionality has as a style obsession, what’s yours?
Handbags, without a single doubt!
Do you follow any fashion blogs? If so, what are they and which would you recommend?
Internationally, Whowhatwear.com and locally would be confashionsfromkuwait.com. Both are strongly recommended!
What item of clothing (if any) do you wish that people wore more often?
Hats—unfortunately hats are an accessory that we’re not really crazy about in Kuwait. Having said that, a hat is one of the most beautiful accessories, if worn correctly!
To be stylish is to be fashionable. True or False and why?
False, because as Coco Chanel recalled once “fashion fades, only style remains the same”
Shop n’Drop is located in Salhiya, Mohammad Thunayan Alghanim St. Follow them on Instagram,
@Shopndrop or call 2249 0906 for more information.