The window display to the right of Blue State on York Street will no longer showcase stacks of charm bracelets.
Alex and Ani, an accessories-only boutique, which opened its second store in Connecticut two years ago at 284 York St., closed at the beginning of February when its lease ended. After learning that the store decided to close, Wave, a gift shop and jewelry store on Chapel Street, decided to expand their pre-existing Alex and Ani collection to include their full line of products.
“They didn’t close because they weren’t doing good business,” said Phyllis Satin, owner of Wave. “When I spoke to the people, it was really a matter of needing a larger store. They need more space and better parking.”
Satin added that Alex and Ani will be opening another flagship store in an East Windsor, Connecticut mall.
Alex and Ani representatives could not be reached for comment.
Of 10 students interviewed on York Street, only one had shopped at Alex and Ani in the past. The other nine all said the store was not popular within their friend groups.
Ella Wood ’15 said she received some free products from Alex and Ani during College Night — an evening of discounted shopping, free food and live music in the Broadway Shopping District — and she does not especially like the products.
But the local demand for Alex and Ani products, Satin said, is only partially reliant on Yale students. Satin added that she decided to expand Wave’s Alex and Ani collection because she was confident in the company’s success..
Jessica French, an employee at Wave, added that only a fraction of the customers are Yale students.
“We get a real combination of both students and people that are out and about having dinner, going to the theater and the movies,” French said.
Moreover, despite the general ambivalence, some students expressed disappointment that the store had closed. Soraya Conille ’18 said there are limited choices for accessory shopping near Yale, and Alex and Ani’s closing has only aggravated the issue.
Hannah Greene ’18, who lives in New Haven, said the charms went through periods of popularity and made for great gifts. She added, however, that the brand’s availability at Wave will make up for the lack of a flagship shop.
“It was like a craze for a while,” Greene said. “I have a good amount of bracelets. They were just so accessible and so cheap that they made for great presents, birthdays, graduations. Like for [high school] graduation, I got the Yale [bracelet].”
Alex and Ani was founded in 2004 in Rhode Island.