Two New Canaan Women To Open ‘Private Showroom’ on Elm Street for Designer Men’s Clothes

Two New Canaan women next week are opening what they’re calling “a private showroom” for custom men’s suits on Elm Street, a place where they plan to display samples and meet with clients. Melissa Engel, who is opening the J. Hilburn-brand showroom with longtime friend Keleigh McAuliffe, said New Canaan is a perfect location. “I think that New Canaan is a sophisticated market because of its proximity to New York City,” Engel said. “New Canaan is sensitive to fashion trends and quality, but is also definitely still price sensitive and interested in good value.”

Asked to describe New Canaan’s style, Engel said: “I would say that we are a very conservative and somewhat preppy town. There are some young, metro trends in the city that I don’t think New Canaan would adopt.”

Located at 199 Elm St.—directly across from the train station, in The Glass House building—the showroom will feature much of the Hilburn line, including suits, dress and casual shirts and shorts.

New Canaan Teacher Turns Independent Style Consultant


New Canaan resident Elizabeth Blanchard had been teaching professionally—at St. Luke’s School, Saxe Middle School, in Italy and finally at Stamford’s King Low Heywood Thomas—for more than a dozen years when she decided to make a career change for herself and her family. By January 2013, Blanchard already had spent a few years exploring a lifelong interest in style and fashion by hooking up with Stella and Dot accessories line. Doing trunk shows at private parties on the side while teaching middle school English at KLHT, Blanchard was surprised to find she had a knack for selling without pushing. Blanchard and her husband, Erick Galarreta, a personal banker at JP Morgan Chase in Stamford, were seeking some supplemental income, having recently moved out of her mother’s and on their own in New Canaan with one young son, and they wanted a second child.