When you walk into Bonnie & Clyde on Water Street, you find a store that’s bright and airy; it has that natural nautical feel to it, like Block Island must have felt decades ago, when no one was in a hurry.
Karin Carlone, who now owns the shop, was looking to create that fun vibe. Her inspiration for the store are her own memories of shopping with her family.
“This made me think of those memories,” she said, referencing the store. “Something fun with the girlfriends” while also having a “bit of a beach vibe to it.”
The store, which focuses on women’s fashion, isn’t crammed with merchandise; it has a more open atmosphere. There are three changing rooms, where customers can try on clothes that, as Carlone put it, “are casual — or something stylish you can wear to a cocktail party.” Carlone remembers one woman who came to the island for a wedding but didn’t have anything to wear.
“She came in and bought a beautiful dress and she was all set,” Carlone said. In that way, she added, “you get to be part of someone’s story when they find an outfit for that special occasion.”
Carlone gives credit to the store’s buyer, Kelly Case. “She’s been here for years. She’s a great help. Kelly has a great sense of style and chooses things that fit well with the store.” Bonnie & Clyde carries such brands as Free People, Anchor Heart — a Rhode Island company that makes fun Block Island-themed tee shirts — BB Dakota, and Body Gone bathing suits. It also carries accessories such as eco-friendly beach bags, jewelry, and sunglasses. She also wanted to thank the store’s former owner, Dennis Noreiko, who first presented her with the opportunity to buy the store.
Although Carlone started out her career as a teacher, and had never owned her own business before, she’s happy that the store reflects her memories of the times she spent with her family trying on new clothes.
“I feel this is in alignment with what I’m supposed to be doing,” she said.
Bonnie & Clyde is open seven days a week, from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. The phone is (401) 466-8895, and more information can be found on its Facebook page and Instagram account.