The Steel Beam
The first time I entered “The Steel Beam” It took me back many years (well, not too many) to when I worked in NYC. It reminded me of the lofty boutiques in Soho. The ones I’d walk past drooling and dreaming of one day shopping in. That one day never came, which is why I was excited to hear about the newest addition to the “Lehigh Valley shopping scene”. The Steel Beam has a laid back atmosphere, with an art gallery vibe They sell one of-a -kind, designer pieces at a fraction of the price. The owner Fay, is lovely and soft spoken. She has impeccable taste, and it shows by all the samples she receives daily. Fay worked in the Fashion Industry for over 20 years and she knows the business inside and out. This store has made a great addition to the Lehigh Valley. The Steel Beam is located in the heart of Downtown Bethlehem.
This is my interview with the owner, Faye. It was conducted in April 2014 right after their Grand Opening. I happened to stumble upon it and thought I’d share it with my fellow fashionistas.
Q: Where did the name Steel Beam originate from?
A: We wanted to pay homage to the history and architecture of Bethlehem, “the steel beam” is an architectural element we are fond of for it’s strength and support, it captures the industrial chic aesthetic we try to design in the space of the shop. We hope the space is inviting and comfortable. We wanted to create a creative gallery space to give our customers a curated selection of hand crafted inspirations, fine detail designs and artistic appeal in every piece we carry. We also want the space to be ever changing and showcase fresh, modern creations and gallery like interactive. A curated environment for all 5 senses, whether it be a spring garden like we did for our grand opening or or an industrial take on nautical and the beach.
Q: What experience do you currently have in the Fashion Industry or have had in the past?
A: Formerly for 23 years, I was a fashion designer for higher end design firms such as Badgley Mischka, Marc Jacobs, J.Mendel, Marchesa as well as mass market Ann Taylor. I also freelanced at many various companies and have access to many showroom samples. With such long hours in fashion industry I was unable to find right companion until now- my boyfriend helps me so much at the shop. The strength and support of friends & family are like the steel beam, without them it would not be possible.
Q: Is it true in addition to running the Steel Beam you also design and own a bridal company?
A: Yes, we have a bridal accessories line that sells nationally/internationally carried by bridal shops across America. Our next step is to design our own dresses & gowns.
Q: What is the basic concept behind “The Steal Beam”?
A: It is a new concept boutique offering one-of-kind high end designer labels, custom alterations, most of our accessories for men & women are hand-made by other designers or in our sample room. We plan to open alterations and custom designs at the back of the loft which includes getting your dresses altered, hem shortened, anything custom, if you have your own designs- there are so many creative people with great ideas that just need a little help to execute, example custom guitar straps, bridal hair accessories, own clothing designs.
Q: What does a Sample size mean?
A: Showroom/ runway samples are usually size zero to 2. Fit/ production samples can run all sizes. We carry multi-brand prototype samples, showroom/runway samples, production samples, one of a kind, hard to find designer pieces and will also be including our own designs in the mix.
From the owner of “The Steel Beam”
Nicole-we are so glad you found us and hope to see you soon!
please come to our in-store events involving learning workshops as well as fundraising benefits. Double good reasons: for good causes & for a fun learning get together!
I can’t wait to make a return visit to this awesome boutique.
Check out the Steel Beam online