Cargo Room is a fashion boutique on wheels — like a food truck, only with trendy clothing and accessories instead of tacos.
Inside, the air-conditioned concession trailer, owner Heather Parsons, 28, has squeezed racks of brightly colored dresses and rows of straw fedoras and handbags into every last inch of the 84 square feet of space.
There’s even a changing room.
“I know I can’t buy clothes unless I try them on first,” Parsons said.
Parsons got the idea for the mobile boutique during a summer trip to South Africa through the Oklahoma State University’s Entrepreneurship and Empowerment in South Africa program while studying for her master’s degree in entrepreneurship.
“Out of necessity there, people create their own businesses and there are a lot of shops there that are based out of shipping containers and other spaces,” she said.
Mobile retailers, based in everything from vintage Airstream trailers to converted school buses are popping up in the Northeast and West Coast — there’s even an American Mobile Retail Association. The trade group has members ranging from a mobile dog treat and pet boutique in Hoboken, N.J., to a bridal boutique on wheels in Colorado Springs, Colo., according to its website, but most of the businesses are based on the East or West coasts.
“It’s kind of a new thing in this part of the country” Parsons said. “I don’t want to say I’m the first one in Oklahoma, but I haven’t heard of any others.”
Parsons works full time at an investment firm, and has spent the past six months transforming the trailer into a clothing boutique with the help of her mother and stepfather.
“She’s just a very creative person to be able to take something like a trailer and turn it into a clothing boutique; she’s always been able to do things like that,” said Parson’s mother Michelle Fields.
SUV to haul shop
Her plan is to hitch the trailer on the back of an SUV and setting up shop outside coffee shops and various events around the Oklahoma City area.
Her first public appearance at Premier on Film Row last week went over well and more events are in the works, she said.
“It’s great, because I can go to where the people are instead of waiting for them to come to me,” Parsons said.
Check it out
Cargo Room will be at Vintage Coffee, 1101 NW 49, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. The mobile boutique will also be at Skyline Food Truck Festival Aug. 23 at Downtown Airpark in Oklahoma City. For more information about Cargo Room, visit www.shopcargo