The coronavirus shutdown was the final nail in the coffin for this much-loved boutique.
The coronavirus shutdown was the final nail in the coffin for this much-loved boutique.

Coronavirus claims much-loved fashion boutique

ONE of Brisbane's longest established fashion boutiques has closed its doors blaming the coronavirus pandemic and the "endless options" now available to consumers.

Paula Acheson, who ran Petrol Boutique at Paddington, says the world of retail has changed dramatically since she first opened her shop more than 30 years ago.

Paula Acheson
Paula Acheson

Acheson says love of clothes and the art of dressing will always be her passion but at 67 she was looking at taking it easy. Acheson says online sales such as Black Friday had impacted bricks-and-mortar retailers who were struggling to keep people coming in their doors.

"People want everything on a discount," she says. "We were an icon at Paddington for years but with coronavirus it just became too difficult." Petrol specialised in clothing for special events such as weddings, races and parties so the pandemic shutdown had hit her business hard.

"I have worked with many designers, suppliers and agents and my business has done its part for the Australian fashion industry, employers and the economy," she says.

She also is proud of the young people who have worked with her over the years as shop assistants.Fashion retailers such as Petrol are expected to be among the hardest hit as Australia moves into a recession following the pandemic.

As many as one in six Australian small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) could close as a result of the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Ruthven Institute founder and respected economic futurist, Phil Ruthven

Originally published as Coronavirus claims much-loved Brissie fashion boutique


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