Written by TSG Contributing Editor, Kate Rowan
It’s always a pleasure to interact with someone who is truly passionate about the business they own and operate, and with our customer base here at The Scout Guide, we’ve been lucky enough to get used to it!
Sonia Peralta, owner of Pastel Children’s Boutique on Palm Beach, is no exception.
Many years ago, Sonia stumbled upon a role which began as a passion project and eventually defined the future of her career.
Set along a quiet side street off N County Rd is Pastel, a Pa Beach mainstay for delightfully tiny garments (read: Childrens clothes).
Upon entering you’re likely to be greeted by owner Sonia Peralta, a friendly and engaging woman who on any given week (or weekend) can be found helping customers and their children pick out the perfect outfit, toy or gift.
Sonia started out in the shop as a part-time employee in 1984, the same year the store opened.
Over the years she became more engrained in the business, attending tradeshows with the previous owner, learning how to buy, and gaining a foundation of general retail operations.
She knew then, as she does now, that she truly loved the job.
Following the unfortunate passing of her previously boss, the opportunity arose to own and operate the business herself – and Sonia knew she had to rise to the occasion.
She credits much of her success to her predecessor and mentor.
“The original owner was Sue Alexander,” shared Sonia. “She’s in heaven right now, and she’s here with me all of the time. I’ll always remember her.”
As a true one-woman show, Sonia embodies everything that’s admirable about a hard-working small business owner.
She manages everything from buying the product at tradeshows to unpacking the boxes when they arrive, ultimately merchandising them on the racks and shelves and helping customers pick out which style is right for them.
If she doesn’t have something a customer needs, she’ll recommend another local small business as an alternative, or put in a special order.
She’s in the shop every single day.
Can you tell we’re a fan?!
As the expert in the world of local childrens wear, we picked her brain on how styles have evolved over the years.
“It’s changed a lot, but we always try to keep the glamour and the classics,” says Peralta.
“That’s what people come here for. I give them a little bit of contemporary and a little bit of classic,” she added.
She continued on some of the trends she’s seen as of recently.
“The little girls like the little lightweight, flouncy dresses…the gauzy, boho look.”
The assortment in the store covers a broad range, from christening dresses and bathing suits to tricycles and basinets.
“I try to go for unique toys – learning toys. I have shoes, books, clothes…I sell a little bit of everything,” says Sonia.
“I just got a shipment of the Moses Baskets,” she added.
“I had to wait a long time for these – I ordered them last year and they just came in!”
For those seeking a touch of something special, Pastel offers custom embroidery with an ultra fast turnaround.
“I do personalization on diaper covers, dresses, hats, towels…anything they want,” says Sonia.
Depending on the style, the embroidery can be completed in as little as 2-3 days!