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Iconic boutique Linda Dresner closing March 1

By Lisa Brody

After 45 years as a fashion maverick, Linda Dresner, owner of the Birmingham boutique Linda Dresner, announced she is closing her store March 1.

The boutique has been located at 299 W. Maple at the corner of Bates in downtown Birmingham for the last 28 years, after first locating in Somerset for 10 years. Prior to that, she was partner with the late Hattie Belkin in other fashion endeavors in Birmingham and Franklin.

In addition, for 25 years Dresner made her mark on the New York fashion scene, with a destination boutique on Park Avenue in Manhattan. Both her Park Avenue and Birmingham stores reflected Dresner's contemporary aesthetic, and were family-financed. “It is an experience that pushes women and men to see themselves not in fear but in confidence,” she said on her website. “Here in Detroit, we don’t have to wish. We don’t have to speak in whispers. We can walk around the corner and experience a masterpiece, not found in any other corner of the world.”

Dresner was a fashion leader, not only in the midwest, but on an international scale, where she was often the first to champion new – and now revered – designers such as Comme des Garcons, Junya Watanabe, Yohji Yamamoto, Jil Sander and Vetements.

“Linda was known and respected by everyone in the fashion industry,” said Karen Daskas, co-owner of Tender, a neighboring high-end fashion boutique in Birmingham. “It's such a loss for fashion and a bigger loss for Birmingham.”

Rumors had been swirling in the wholesale clothing market in New York for the last couple of weeks as word got around that Dresner had cancelled her spring orders. This past weekend, artist Leon Dickey, whose artwork had adorned her store in recent years, moved his works out.

Whether it was a victim of the economy or the COVID-19 pandemic, Dresner declined to say when reached today.

“It's time. It's only been 45 years,” she laughed.

Before shutting her doors, around March 1, the store is having a massive 80 percent off sale.


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