Kasey McNamara’s story is similar to several of the people we’ve met during our interviews of local merchants. People who were living somewhere else doing something else when they decide they needed a quieter, simpler life for themselves and their family.
Kasey was living in Boston and working in finance on the regulatory side of mutual funds. There she met her husband, Jay, and had their first child. They quickly decided that Boston wasn’t where they wanted to raise their children. Houses were so expensive that the only ones they could afford meant long commutes into work each day. And they wanted a quieter pace of life and safer surroundings to raise their children. They decided to move back to Maine where Kasey grew up and Jay’s parents moved to in 1986.
While living on Westport Island, Kasey had her second child and in 2008 began working part time at In the Clover. Once the kids grew older she decided to start working full time again. She left the store and went back into the world of finance. That only lasted a couple of years. Kasey quickly found that she was no longer wanted to spend her day sitting behind a computer screen and missed working with the staff and customers at the store. She and Jay discussed it and decided to take a chance and see if then owner, Kelley Belanger, would be interested in selling someday.
The timing was perfect for everyone and in 2017 Kasey and Jay bought the store and haven’t looked back. Jay handles all the accounting, bill paying and business management side of the company. Kasey manages the staffing, purchasing, the look and feel of the store, and the day to day running of it. They now have just a 10 minute commute to work and are able to be there for all their kids numerous school and extra curriculum activities.
Kasey is enjoying buying the clothing and goods sold in the store. The first year most of the merchandise was already purchased and the second year she was conservative as it was her first time buying. This year she’s felt able to take more risks and is always looking to update her collections. She makes an annual buying trip to NYC and quarterly trips to Portland to meet with vendors. She aims to keep up with trends while not being “trendy”.
When asked what the style is in fashion, she said that fashion is more wide open then it’s ever been. “Fashion is now about being comfortable and feeling good about yourself. If you like a particular style of jean then wear them. Nothing is ‘out of style’ anymore.”
As a store they try to support that, they don’t just cater to one look. If customers have clothing preferences they’ll try to bring in items that match it. This has brought them a loyal customer following as has their focus on customer service. If they get an item that they know a regular customer will like, they’ll call them or even send photos. They have several out of state customers who regularly purchase clothes from In the Clover and have them shipped.
If you haven’t visited In the Clover recently Kasey invites you to stop by and see what’s new. She and her staff are happy to help you find the clothing and accessories that makes you feel both comfortable and beautiful whatever your style.
This article is part of a series produced by Friends of Wiscasset to highlight area businesses. This article was written by Saundra Neperud. Other stories in this series include: