Make us your home page

FiFi Ruffles, Cerulean Blu Swim & Resort Boutique open in downtown St. Petersburg


Mom quits her day job to open girls boutique

A children's clothing store is near the top of the wish list of St. Petersburg residents, according to research cited by the developers of the Shops at St. Pete. One local mom agrees and isn't waiting until 2014 for the reincarnated BayWalk to open. Kim Woitkowski recently left her longtime job at a payroll processing company and has opened a girls boutique called FiFi Ruffles at 439 First Ave N. Now her 20-month-old daughter, Sophia, comes to work with her each day at the cozy shop next to the Princess Martha and across from the Open Air Post Office. The store is filled with clothing and accessories that Woitkowski finds on the Internet, buys from wholesalers and even makes herself. "I carry a lot of things that aren't available anywhere else in Tampa Bay," she said. She is also buying from four local women who created their own line. Prices range from $8 to $70, with many items in the $25 range.

Resort-style shop fills void downtown

The new Cerulean Blu Swim & Resort Boutique, at 400 Beach Drive NE, Suite 161, aims to make swimsuit shopping less painful, possibly even fun. Its wide selection of contemporary and retro suits along with a variety of cover-ups "offer solutions to the hazards that typically plague swim and resort wear shopping," according to owner Desiree Noisette. The look and feel of the store resembles a spa for a reason. "We want women to feel comfortable and relaxed," Noisette said. The location is key to her business plan as well. "The city has a lot of tourism but no swimwear or resort wear stores. The hotels don't have them anymore," she said.

Katherine Snow Smith, Times staff writer

FiFi Ruffles, Cerulean Blu Swim & Resort Boutique open in downtown St. Petersburg 11/13/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 13, 2012 2:41pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Former Sen. Greg Evers, advocate for law enforcement, dead at 62.

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Former State Sen. Greg Evers, the Baker Florida strawberry farmer and veteran politician, was killed in a single car crash hear his home in Okaloosa County. The Florida Highway Patrol confirmed the death late Tuesday, but deferred any further information pending an investigation. He was 62.

    Former Florida Senator Greg Evers, R- Milton, was a passionate advocate for law enforcement and corrections officers. He was found dead Tuesday afternoon in a car crash. He was 62. [SCOTT KEELER | Tampa Bay Times]
  2. Foundation Partners buys Anderson-McQueen Funeral Home


    ST. PETERSBURG — Anderson-McQueen Funeral Home, the Tampa Bay area's largest family-owned funeral company, has been sold.

    Anderson-McQueen Funeral Home, the Tampa Bay area's largest family-owned funeral company, has been sold.
[CHRIS URSO   |   Times]
  3. Water Street Tampa unveils video showing downtown's transformation


    TAMPA — Water Street Tampa, the sweeping, 50-plus acre redevelopment project in Tampa's urban core, has unveiled new images and video of what the downtown district will look like upon completion.

    Strategic Property Partners released a conceptual image of what the Tampa skyline will look like once its redevelopment of 50-plus acres of downtown will look like. [Photo courtesy of  of SPP]
  4. Florida ranks high for workplace equality between men and women

    Working Life

    When it comes to the workplace, Florida ranks fifth in terms of gender equality, a WalletHub study released Tuesday found.

    Florida ranks high in terms of equality between men and women in the workplace. Pictured is Sandra Murman, county commissioner in 2015, talking about the differences in pay between men and women. | [Times file photo]
  5. Treasury secretary's wife boasts of travel on government plane, touts high fashion


    U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin's wife, Louise Linton, boasted of flying on a government plane with her husband to Kentucky on Monday and then named the numerous fashion brands she wore on the trip in an unusual social media post that only became more bizarre minutes later.

    Steven Mnuchin and his then- financee Louise Linton watch as President Donald Trump speaks during Mnuchin's swearing-in ceremony as  treasury secretary in the Oval Office of the White House on Feb. 13. [Mandel Ngan | AFP via Getty Images]