About Houston Graeff
Houston Graeff is an online boutique that sells fashionably edgy clothing and accessories, all while catering to consumers who like to make sure that their look is unique. It’s described as a digital dream closet filled with handpicked items to indulge the modern woman.
Offering a selection of items that could be equally at home in a club or Coachella, Houston Graeff boutique is the brainchild of two besties, Martha Graeff and Esther Houston. Martha and Esther’s combined experience in the fashion world certainly supports their authority on what’s stylish—both work as models and have collaborated with big-name brands.
But, don’t think that these two are just lending their pretty faces to promote a brand. As the founder of Whooland, a creative and design agency, Esther Houston already has one successful venture under her (probably impeccable) belt—not to mention tried-and-tested creative chops to help shape and curate the boutique’s branding.
Martha Graeff has worked as a stylist and Womenswear Buyer, bringing her own entrepreneurial success to Houston Graeff’s table. On top of modeling for other brands (you can a quick video of one of her campaigns above), Martha also runs a fashion/ lifestyle blog that’s chock-full of beauty, foodie, and travel tips and highlights her street-chic-meets-high-street style.
With their fingers in so many fashionable pots, what inspired Martha and Esther to start Houston Graeff? According to the boutique’s About page, the brand was "born out of our mutual love for all things beautiful and rare.”
While beauty might be in the eye of the beholder, Houston Graeff go to lengths to make sure “rare” is taken literally, as they purposefully limit the quantity of their stock. This is to ensure that Houston Graeff shoppers won’t see their same outfit on someone else.
How limited is the availability of your potentially next favorite item over at Houston Graeff? We tried on their shopping experience to see.
What Houston Graeff Has To Offer
The boutique currently only has 48 items up for sale—however, it does appear that new items are added daily. Some examples of what’s available include their Pencil Club Dress ($60) and Wrap Chic Dress ($40).
Images via houstongraeff.com
While the prices for the two items above are on par with other retailers targeting a similar market, similarities in available styles can be found as well. We searched through the selections offered by popular retailer Nasty Gal and found several items that could be from the same collection.
For example, the first image of a fringed dress by Nasty Gal shares many similarities with Houston Graeff’s fringed skirt.
Image via houstongraeff.com and nastygal.com
What does that mean for shoppers? Only that the items offered at Houston Graeff might be made rare in quantity, but similar styles can be found by searching other retailers.
This is important because something else we noticed when shopping Houston Graeff is that many styles aren’t available in a size large.
We reached out to a Houston Graeff representative who confirmed that larger sizes are, indeed, available in some pieces. Since the brand only offers a small number of each item and recently added pieces are available in small, medium, and large, we assume that the large sizes sell out first.
What Houston Graeff Is Currently Missing
It’s worth noting that what size you should be ordering is difficult to decide, since the boutique’s website doesn’t yet offer a sizing guide. However, they appear to be adding more to their website daily, including consistent product descriptions, so one may be coming soon. In the interim, we can attest that their customer service responds promptly to emails and should be able to assist you with sizing questions.
If you’re consistently missing out on selections in your size, you may want to stay on top of the boutique's new stock via social media and newsletters—both of which can be found on their official website.
Another thing missing from Houston Graeff’s website? Consistent item descriptions. We did see that some newer items feature product copy describing what a piece looks like. However, we were unable to find fabric or material descriptions when perusing what’s available.
Houston Graeff Refund Policy
While limiting how many of any given item is available certainly limits the risk that your equally-hip coworker won’t be sporting the same collection, it can also make shopping a pain.
What if you finally find something on Houston Graeff that you adore, only to receive your order to learn that it doesn’t fit?
Houston Graeff accepts returns and exchanges of unworn, tagged pieces for up to 14 days following receipt. To do so, fill out the form made available on their website, then be sure to include your original invoice in the returned parcel. Also, note that they do not cover return shipping costs.
Bottom Line: As Of Now, Houston Graeff Leaves Much To Be Desired
Houston Graeff does appear to offer a unique selection of apparel and accessories that would stand out in any crowd. And, with prices ranging from $50-380 an item, the boutique falls within the average price range of those targeting a hip, 30’s crowd.
However, because it’s such a new company, it’s possible that Houston Graeff is still slapping on the final figurative coat of paint onto their shopping experience. We’re assuming it’s because they’re in their early states, but we were also unable to locate any independent reviews from shoppers.
That being said, those looking to shop on Houston Graeff appear to have to do so sans the following:
- Item descriptions, including fabric and material details
- A sizing chart that lets shoppers know who fits HG’s definition of available sizes
In the future, those browsing the website will hopefully see more attention paid to the available information. Until then, as a consumer, I would only purchase an item after confirming materials, sizing, and their refund policy with customer service—hopefully this won’t impact a potential shopper’s ability to jump on a limited stock item.