MOUNT HOLLY – The High Street business district has seen a great deal of revitalization over the past decade.
It has hosted a brewery and distillery, an ice cream parlor and café, and several new restaurants.
But now it’s hosting something a little different: a women’s clothing store, Jhene and Gray, located at 86 High Street.
Township resident Leslie Walsh opened the store on June 19 as part of her online business, which offers reasonably priced women’s clothing, typically under $ 100.
“It was important for me to be on the High Street, so the locals knew my face,” Walsh said.
Walsh orders her clothes from California manufacturers, and they can be worn by women of any age and in almost any situation, according to the owner. There are shirts, rompers, jeans, and yoga pants that repeat customers explain can be tailored for a social occasion or discounted for chilling out around the house.
“It’s versatile,” said Natasha Yacono, a Pemberton resident who has been a customer since 2019, when the online store opened.
So far, Walsh’s clients are like Yacono; they started buying from the Pemberton native because they saw her posting to her store on social media. Now, they’ve tracked Walsh to his physical location.
Yacono has visited the High Street location twice before. Anaiyah Inge, an Eastampton resident and previously online shopper, visited the store several times a week and bought at least four new parts each time.
She said the items were durable and comfortable, and she no longer had to drive 25 minutes to the Cherry Hill Mall to shop for clothes in person. And whenever she visits Jhene and Gray, Inge also eats at Yaad Man, a Jamaican restaurant across the street.
“Looks like it’s okay,” Inge said of Jhene and Gray.
Walsh’s challenge is to attract new customers, she said. Foot traffic on the High Street can be low during the week, and women are still used to visiting malls, big box stores, and the internet for clothing.
But the owner agrees to find out. A few years ago, she returned from New York to Burlington County. Then, during the coronavirus pandemic last year, she was fired from her job at a fashion company in the big city.
When the High Street space became available earlier this year, she saw an opportunity to turn her side business, the online store, into her full-time job. She also saw a chance to walk to work, instead of going to New York and barely seeing her husband and young daughter.
“I have a daughter growing up in Mount Holly,” Walsh said. “I wanted her to see her parents building something.”
Jarrad Daniel Saffren covers the COVID vaccination process, education and business for the Burlington County Times, Courier Post and Daily Journal. Help us support local journalism with a digital subscription.