Interview: Alicia DiMichele-Garofalo of East Passyunk’s Addiction Boutique

While she may have turned down an appearance on VH1’s Mob Wives, she certainly didn’t turn down venturing into her own success. Alicia DiMichele-Garofalo, owner of Cherry Hill’s Addiction Boutique, has decided to open up a second location right here on Philly’s thriving East Passyunk Avenue. Situated in what used to be the Bronze Bar tanning salon, across from popular spots Plenty and Birra, there is now a new, bold, and sassy neighbor on the block.

The first things I noticed at Addiction were bold colors, funky patterns, jumpsuits, flowy dresses, plenty of accessories (jewelry, clutches, home decor items, etc.), and only a small hint of animal print. What surprised me the most about the store was how it blended outside of the box options with more classic, subdued pieces that anyone could add to their wardrobe. To top it off, nothing was more than $100.

Just over the weekend Addiction Boutique had its grand opening. It was quite the party with beats from DJ Ebro, appetizers provided by Stogie Joes, black and white balloons throughout the store, spiked iced tea, and a red carpet to boot. DiMichele-Garofalo was looking fly and fierce with a lacey top, black bra, leather skirt, and black headband.

Alicia DiMichelle4 had a chance to chat with DiMichele-Garofalo about opening up shop here in Philly, her shopping addiction (hence, the name of her store), and the importance of looking good and rocking your own style.

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_________ When did you decide you wanted to go into the fashion industry? When did you really first think to yourself, “This is what I want to do?”

DiMichele-Garofalo: I have always loved fashion and, of course, shopping. When I first met my husband, who is originally from Brooklyn, he used to take me shopping in all these cool little trendy boutiques in New York, and that’s when I officially became ADDICTED!  There was nothing like these boutiques where I live in Marlton, N.J., and I knew that this is what I wanted to do, to feed my addiction. Where do you draw inspiration from? Is there perhaps a way you can categorize the type of style you like to promote? Or even a decade or area of the world?

Alicia DiMichelle

DG: Dressing to me is like drawing a piece of art, you are your own canvas. My style varies from rocker chic, glam rock, boho chic to girly girly. I tend to catch people off guard with my look because I am never consistent. My inspiration comes from the feeling I want to project for that day in what I’m wearing, whether it’s power and confidence, fierce and sexy, or cool and laid back. On that same note, is there an individual or individuals who inspire you to do what you do?

DG: My inspirations are my three beautiful sons because everyday I try and show them that no matter what life throws at you, if you stay true to yourself and what you believe in, you will without a doubt thrive to survive…my only agenda is success. I have always been fascinated with self-made, successful woman — they are also an inspiration.

Alicia DiMichelle7 Do you plan on spending a lot of time up here in your Philly location?

DG: I plan on spending a lot of my time in my Philly store meeting the new customers, making sure that the store is up and running perfectly, and to make sure that everyone in South Philly gets addicted! What made you hone in on the East Passyunk location?

DG: I wanted to open my second location on East Passyunk because a lot of my customers would drive from Philly to my store in Cherry Hill to shop. I knew that East Passyunk has been up and coming and wanted to help make it thrive by adding my boutique to the mix.

Alicia DiMichelle9 Do you have plans to continue expanding beyond your New Jersey and Philly locations?

DG: It is absolutely in my plans to open more stores and spread the addiction! What separates your boutique from other boutiques in Philadelphia? In your opinion, why should someone shop at Addiction as opposed to a competitor?

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DG: Addiction Boutique stands out from the rest with our very unique styles that you will not see anywhere else; they’re all very reasonably priced and under $100. Our loyal customers know to check in often because our inventory is limited. We receive orders twice per week, and once it’s gone it’s gone for good.

Alicia DiMichelle6 How excited are you for your new location?

DG: I am so excited to have another store and venture into a new location and to embrace the people and businesses on East Passyunk Avenue.

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