Shop stories: Explore Tsalta in Elsternwick Village

Shop stories: Explore Tsalta in Elsternwick Village

When you’re an artist with a passion for fashion, a beautiful boutique clothing store is in your stars.

Jill Stanbury taught art at Wesley College in Elsternwick but a love of fashion and an eye for style took her creativity in a new direction.

After years of mulling over the idea and allowing the seed of a clothing shop idea to form and grow in her mind, Ms Stanbury eventually opened her wonderful Elsternwick Village store Tsalta.

“I played with it a little while in my twenties,” she said.

“I then went on to teach, which I loved but the idea never left me and eventually I took the plunge and Tsalta was born.

“Obviously there is a lot of ups and downs in retail, but I love it – everything from researching the labels, to buying the clothing to interacting with customers in store.”

Enjoying the village vibe

When Ms Stanbury was choosing a location for her shop, Elsternwick Village was the obvious choice.

“Because I had been at the college for many years, I knew a lot of people in the area and it very much felt like my place,” she said.

And her location choice has proved a good one.

“I’m on a busy strip on Glen Huntly Rd. I am opposite the health food store and just down from Officeworks, so there is plenty of foot traffic and I get customers who were just walking past to elsewhere and decided to come in,” Ms Stanbury said.

“There are a few other fashion stores on the strip which is great and I am delighted a book shop has opened just along the street, too.

“The area has a buzzy vibe. There’s plenty of variety of stores to attract people to the area.”

Ms Stanbury also loves to source the products for the boutique.

“It’s a great joy,” she said.

Shop stories: Explore Tsalta in Elsternwick Village
Shop stories: Explore Tsalta in Elsternwick Village

Something for everyone

“My customers are aged from about 40 years old to 70 years old and I love to think about all of that age range as I make my fashion decisions,” Ms Stanbury said.

And it’s not as difficult as it may sound because Tsalta’s older demographic are not your tweed skirt and blouse women.

“They are not the conservative older women. You can be older but still stylish and with a fun and vibrant fashion sense. I love to cater for that,” Ms Stanbury said.

“Many of my older customers return again and again because they can’t find what they want elsewhere.”

Ms Stanbury’s eye for fashion and her knowledge of what the younger and the older woman wants are obvious in the range of styles available at Tsalta.

The tops, bottoms and dresses are chic but lively and come from a range of labels.

“I source local labels as much as possible and always have a European label or two,” Ms Stanbury said.

Popular Australian label Elk has just been added to the collection which includes the Amsterdam-based vintage inspired King Louis brand.

In honour of grandpa

In case you’re wondering, the store name Tsalta was wonderfully inspired by Ms Stanbury’s grandfather Edgar who, like his granddaughter many decades later, had dreams of running his own business.

“When he found and bought his farm in the western district, he named it Tsalta because it is ‘at last’ [spelled] backwards. At last, he had his own farm, his own business,” Ms Stanbury said.

“When I eventually followed my dream, my dad – also Edgar – urged me to name mine Tsalta, too.

“I’m so glad I did. It was ‘at last’ for me, as well.”

Shop stories: Explore Tsalta in Elsternwick Village

Visit the store


369 Glen Huntly Rd, Elsternwick

Phone: 0407 551 167 or (03) 8528 7677

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