A boutique is a place of business that retails specialty items and customised services, typically fashion. While the word boutique is most commonly associated with fashion, a boutique is any place of business that markets unique, handmade or short run items or services for sale. Boutiques usually cater to niche markets or particular clienteles, for example, baby boutiques, clothes boutiques, or boutiques for young fashion. Boutique clothing stores or shops will often offer more exclusive designer brands for sale.
Many people think of a boutique as a standalone shop with a single owner. However, boutiques are not always standalone stores. Some high-end shopping chains own multiple boutiques. In Australia there are many chain boutiques that specialise in fashion, fashion accessories, shoes, jewellery, luggage, and travel etc. Chain boutiques sell specialised products and target very specific markets, just like their standalone counterparts. These stores often have very well marketed and recognisable brands. Some regional boutiques promote a particular kind of unique clothing, for example, leather clothing and Australian wool clothing.