W. Port owner Emily Bean Livezey first entertained the idea of opening her own clothing store when she was just 7 years old. “I would sucker my brothers and parents into playing ‘retail’ every chance I got,” she says. After earning a fashion merchandising degree from Ole Miss and managing local stores Intermix, Ralph Lauren and Deka, Emily decided to turn a childhood dream into reality and launched W. Port in August 2012.
Located on Roswell Road in Buckhead, the cozy, loft-like boutique is named for Westport, CT, where Emily, a born-Atlantan, was raised. Inside, patrons find a carefully collected selection of clothing, jewelry and accessories that reflect the breezy style of the New England coast.
Choose from CP Shades oversized sweaters and linen tunics, boho-inspired dresses handcrafted by New York phenom Ulla Johnson and popover shirts from American Colors by Alex Lehr, all designers exclusive to W. Port in Atlanta. “Everything in the store feels good on,” according to Emily. “It doesn’t have to be tight to be sexy.”
Case in point: one of Emily’s current faves is an Alex Lehr blue-and-white gingham pullover. “My dad says there’s nothing more attractive than a female in blue gingham,” claims Emily. “Just undo a couple of buttons, and please don’t wear a cami.”
The luxe fabrics and relaxed fit at W. Port attracts locals of all ages, from college girls to women in their 70s. Emily has a fondness for them all, and while she doesn’t see “a Nana rocking a kimono, a classic cashmere sweater is perfect for traveling with the grandkids.”
It’s easy to get swept away by the accessories at W. Port, too. Annabel Ingall’s yummy leather tote bags, nature-inspired jewelry by local designer Audrey Allman and Vince slip-on sneakers are just a few examples of the timeless pieces that pair perfectly with the clothing on hand.
Perhaps one of the biggest attractions of the charming boutique is Emily herself. Sporting a side braid, slouchy sweater and jeans the day we met her, she epitomizes Westport style, yet combines it with a big, warm, Southern personality. Clients are treated as friends and given honest opinions. “I love what I do,” she says. “And people can see it.”
W. Port is located at 3232 Roswell Road NW, Atlanta. Call (404) 565-1644 or visit shopwport.com to learn more.
Photos: Caroline Fontenot