We Are Sincerely Yours
Beacon Hill's newest boutique has a story to tell.
Danielle Meister and Leslie Kinsman
Danielle Meister cuts a striking figure. It’s not so much her physicality — she’s pretty, with a heart-shaped face dusted with freckles and a choppy, umber-colored bob. No, it’s more about her expression — kind but exacting — and the straight-backed, steady way she holds herself. She seems like the sort of woman who would be in charge.
In fact, Meister is very much in charge of We Are Sincerely Yours, a new boutique with an unlikely address — 2711 Troost Ave., in Kansas City’s Beacon Hill neighborhood. This particularly stretch qualifies as both a retail and food desert, though there are rumors, Meister says, about the possibility of a grocery store or a restaurant going into the building across the street. The lack of foot traffic does not alarm her.
“Beacon Hill is growing,” she says, “and to start in an area that is experiencing a lot of new growth doesn’t bother me.”
Besides, she adds, despite its regular shop hours — noon to 6 p.m., Wednesday through Saturday — We Are Sincerely Yours is more of a showroom than anything else, an extension of her online store.
“The amount of house calls I was making and pop-up shops I was doing was exhausting,” Meister says. “It’s so much easier to help someone here in the space.”
The space itself is not huge, and there are only four racks of clothing, but you can feel the consideration each item has been afforded. The clothing is a blend of pristine vintage from a range of decades and local and national designers (I spot Chamchamqueen and Hadley).
There’s also a jewelry case, featuring understated stud earrings and impressive, bulky necklaces, plus a handful of home goods — and some truly magnificent leather-and-hide clutches and bags, courtesy of TADEJ Leather Goods (crafted by Matthew Tadej, Meister’s husband).
Leslie Kinsman, the owner of online shop Wunderhub Vintage, is a permanent vendor at We Are Sincerely Yours, and her stock is interspersed with Meister’s.
“I had been selling mostly through Instagram for more than a year,” Kinsman says. “It’s a hustle. You’re meeting people at a coffee shop to let them try something on, and it might not work, and then you have to go and repost it… I was ready for a brick-and-mortar space.”
Initially, Meister and Kinsman met to trade tips, eventually bonding over their shared aesthetic and their dream of a physical shop. When Laura Frank, the owner of Inner Space Yoga and the cerulean-blue building at 2711 Troost, approached Meister about leasing the space, the idea for We Are Sincerely Yours was not too far behind.
“My perspective is that you really don’t grow or succeed without some collaboration, Meister says. “It takes a village. It took Laura offering up this location. While We Are Sincerely Yours is definitely a project of my own making, I needed someone who was going to be a good support system for me — and Leslie has an amazing following, and she has strengths that I don’t have.”
Style is a strength Meister and Kinsman have in common, though they each show it in different ways. Meister’s aesthetic tends toward drier, natural fibers, simple silhouettes and hidden details. Kinsman gravitates toward bright colors, patterns and statement pieces from the ‘60s and ‘70s. The effect is an eclectic, tasteful collection of pieces that work well together — and work for the sophisticated clients and shoppers who find themselves at We Are Sincerely Yours.
“As soon as I started selling and saw how happy something I’d found and treasured made someone else, it was like, ‘Oh, wow, this is the drug I’m hooked on now,’” Kinsman says. “To be able to do that in real life, and not over the Internet, is the best feeling.”
For Meister, the storefront is just the beginning. Shoppers who align themselves with her aesthetic often become clients of her free personal shopping service, an offer which will only grow thanks to the shop. And in another nod to her collaborative spirit, Meister has plans for art installations and pop-up shops to be hosted at We Are Sincerely Yours.
“I think we’re interested in things that have a story, and because we’re curating, we know who’s telling that story,” she says. “We Are Sincerely Yours gives us a chance to be able to tell our own story and add to the conversation.”
2711 Troost Ave., Kansas City, Mo., (816) 304-6507, wearesincerelyyours.com. Open noon to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday.