Mark Raz Walden laughs when he talks about starting X Boutique, his
discount clothing store.
“The joke is that we started with $40 and an eviction notice,”
A few years ago, Walden and Rilee Fagan, his business partner and
girlfriend, needed rent money fast, so they began selling her vintage
clothing on eBay. Before long, they were buying secondhand T-shirts
from thrift stores and reselling them online full time. But after
discovering less competition for resale designer clothing, the pair
opened their Burbank Boulevard storefront in May, and marked down all
of their high-end items 30% to 80% below the original retail price.
To date, the store has an inventory of 1,600 articles of women’s
clothing from designers such as Katayone Adeli, Marc Jacobs, Theory
and Rebecca Taylor. Fagan said the items range in price from $20 to
Because the store only sells women’s clothing, Walden and Fagan
are planning on installing a “man lounge,” equipped with comfortable
couches and satellite TV for bored boyfriends and spouses of
shoppers. They are also planning to host art exhibits and promotions
featuring massage therapists as soon as the fall.
“We want it to not just be a store, but more of a service,” Walden
said. “We’re professional bargain shoppers.”
Walden said what distinguishes X Boutique from such discount
retail stores as Nordstrom Rack and Ross is that the couple handpick
everything sold in the store. Fagan said it ensures all of their
items are fashionable, the clothing isn’t damaged and that they only
select the best designers.
Suzanne O’Conner, a bargain shopper who reports on various retail
stores throughout the L.A. area for her Web site, www.bargainsla.com,
said their high quality and low prices should make them a destination
“X Boutique carries very pricey stuff found on Sunset [Boulevard],
Melrose [Avenue] and Montana [Avenue], but sell it for about half the
price,” O’Conner said. “They have the highest quality [retail
clothing] in Burbank, including the mall.”