After graduating from UC Santa Barbara, Ariel Hujar decided that it would be the perfect time to make her dream of owning a clothing store into reality. After she and fellow Gaucho and retail enthusiast Zee Chew met through mutual friends, the two hit it off and last November partnered up to open Whiskey & Leather (1101 Coast Village Rd., whiskeyleather.com), an eclectic clothing boutique in Montecito that combines their appreciation for fashion and antiques into one lifestyle brand.
Chew and Hujar’s unique shop possesses a casual and inviting vibe. Whiskey & Leather offers clothes, shoes, and other goods for both men and women, and its diverse inventory makes it the go-to spot for those seeking a unique atmosphere and trendy attire. Their distinct store appeals to both Montecito moms and millennials, offering stylish brands such as Tularosa, Loren Stewart, and Hudson Jeans.
Unlike most clothing boutiques, every item on display in Whiskey & Leather is for sale. Whether you are looking for the perfect accent piece for your home or apartment or a pair of Dolce Vita stilettos for a night out, you can find it here. In a recent interview, Hujar said she loves “to find new brands of clothing and cater to the people who come into the boutique.” To accomplish this goal, each month Chew and Hujar shop for antiques, some of which date back to the 1920s, to sell in their shop, including everything from vintage tables and mirrors to hourglasses and measuring tapes.
Whiskey & Leather also sells an array of jewelry, including rings, earrings, and diamond and 14k gold items, but the store’s simple and delicate necklaces are one of its more popular items, according to Hujar, and “look great when you layer them.” As for attire, popular clothing brands such as 7 for All Mankind cater to the casual, everyday style of their store, whereas menswear lines such as 7 Diamonds, which offers everything from button-ups to plaids, give guys an excuse to stop in and check out the new shop.
Hujar hopes that walking into Whiskey & Leather is like “walking into your friend’s apartment”; it possesses a “style that is different from the other stores in Montecito.”