This local pioneer of style has put Spring Branch on the map for boutique shopping.
Spring Branch ladies in the know are flocking to the grand (re)opening of Choices & More Boutique. The local boutique that features high-end fashions and furnishings has moved into its dream location, a custom built beautiful free-standing building offering a pristine backdrop to the Hill Country chic styles that have been the foundation to the stores success.
Owner, Brenda Thomas, first opened Choices a decade ago with her sister Katie. The original space was a small ranch style building that Brenda shared with her husband’s soil and stone company about 10 miles north of the current location. It was off the beaten path and you had to navigate piles of landscaping and building materials, but the word quickly spread and ladies didn’t mind where it was, they wanted to shop there. “We started small and knew there was a need out here for it,” said Thomas.
Indeed there was, and as the community continued to grow so did that need. Both Choices & More and Thomas Stone and Soil relocated more centrally to the bustling area of Forty-Six Parkway and Highway 281. The new location was in a small strip center just off the highway. First a double room storefront for their fashions and accessories and a smaller assortment of home décor items. Brenda and Katie’s eye for style and love for decorating led to an expansion to a larger space next door.
The duo filled the new space with grand home furnishings. Cowhide fabrics, heavy tooled leather, ornate iron and hand crafted wood pieces were just some of the new additions…yes this store definitely had choices, and much more! It was a first for the area. Choices & More became the foundation to what is now the Spring Branch shopping scene.
“Spring Branch is a cool area and it needed to be represented as such,” said Thomas. “It’s great that Farmhouse is here too, they give us variety, and now people don’t have to go to Boerne, they can have great shopping here.”
Becoming a staple of the community, folks began to look forward to an outing to Choices & More. The store was gaining a reputation for its monthly social events, offering a ladies night with beverages and discounts, a perfect combination. Also, during the holidays Brenda and Katie filled the shop with the most amazing seasonal displays.
As wonderful as things were going, there was still something missing. The shop had evolved to what the strip center allowed, but the cramped, dimly lit space needed a location that would emulate the same beautiful styles it had on the inside. Brenda just so happened to have her eye on a perfect spot. Perched on a small hill just down the road less than a mile was her dream lot and she set forth to make it happen.
Construction began and locals started taking notice! Signs popped up that Choices & More was on the move and their eager fans followed the process through social media. The last few days were a countdown, ‘1 month until opening,’ ‘2 weeks until opening,’ ‘1 day until opening,’ commercials ran locally giving folks a glimpse of the space and on March 8 the doors opened, and the store was flooded. Wine was served, a band played and buzz spread that the day had finally come.
“When I opened the doors yesterday, the word that came to me was a journey. It took a journey to get here. I’ve learned a lot of patience, gratitude, forgiveness.”
The sprawling new boutique exudes an air of sophisticated style, welcoming guests right in through the large irons doors. Once inside, the interiors are filled with the high-end fashions that patrons have come to expect as well as some exciting new additions. A highlight of the space is the home décor department that now seems perfectly settled surrounded by tall ceilings and large sunlit windows.
“The few days we have been open people have noticed the furnishings more than they ever had in the other location,” said Thomas. “Having a location in a strip center didn’t give the perception of the quality we carry.”
Locating to the area in the mid-80s from Minnesota, Katie eventually moved back to her home state, but has been very active in helping Brenda get the new store together. She will remain for a while, but Brenda has her fingers crossed that she can urge her to make it permanent again. Style seems to be in their blood, but Brenda boasts that Katie’s talents with interiors are second to none. For folks who come in needing guidance Katie is on hand to visit their location and work with them to transform their spaces.
As for the boutique side, Brenda still offers the same fashions that her customers adore, yet she is excited for a few new additions. “I brought in Mariana jewelry which is huge for me, I never dreamed I would have it here and it is very popular, as are the Lizzy James bracelets.” The store still offers its same popular lines such as Jon Hart and a variety of Yeti cups and accessories.
On a final note of gratitude Brenda says she gets up everyday and works hard, but does not actually consider what she does as work. “What we’ve known and come to realize everyday is that we just give the glory to God – it’s all about that and it just flourishes.”
Choices & More is open Monday through Saturday from 10am to 6pm (closed Sundays) and located at 18920 Forty-Six Parkway, Spring Branch, Texas 78070. Find them online and follow them socially @choicesandmoreon46.