A tall order for a Bethesda boutique

Talltique offers clothing for the vertically enhanced

Helen Pappas, a self-described avid shopper, knew exactly which items she had trouble finding in her size. At 6-foot-3, she found few stores that carried clothes that fit.

“If I can’t find it, I know other people can’t find it,” she said.

So Pappas started Talltique, a boutique catering to tall women, online in 2012. In October, the business expanded to a storefront in Bethesda.

Some mainstream stores such as J. Crew and Gap sell clothing online designed to fit women up to 6 feet tall with pant inseams up to 36 inches, but Talltique carries clothes measured specially to fit women 6 feet and taller, with inseams up to 41 inches. That’s almost 3½ feet — a rarity in women’s clothing.

The store also carries a range of tall sizes, including “small” sizes, some plus sizes and maternity clothing.

“Being tall women … doesn’t necessarily make us all the same size or the same … style,” Pappas said.

Via its website business, Talltique ships worldwide, and Pappas also provides personal shopping, bringing items to people’s houses to try on. Unlike some tall women’s clothing stores that are only online, Talltique has a physical store, which is open by appointment. Pappas said people want to try on clothing before they buy it; she even has a customer who comes from Georgia every season to do her shopping.

“[It’s] really important for people to be able to try things on and get the feel and say, ‘Hey! This is long enough!’” she said.

Pappas, now 27 years old, got the idea for Talltique after taking an entrepreneurship class at Georgetown University her junior year. Her professor said the best business ideas come from solving problems and had all the students stand up in class and talk about their biggest problems.

With help from her professor, Pappas developed a business plan for Talltique. After graduation, she worked in retail for a year before starting Talltique. Her mother, Diane, is a co-owner, and an assistant now works there on a part-time basis. The store also sells accessories for all sizes.

“We’re building from a crawl to a walk now,” Pappas said.

Talltique is open by appointment at 7815-A Old Georgetown Road, Suite 210, Bethesda, or around the clock attalltique.com. For more information, call 855-330-8255.

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