Now or Never Brings Luxury Fashion and Home Decor to Roosevelt Row in Phoenix
Originally hailing from Tucson, Now or Never has officially planted its roots on Roosevelt Row in Phoenix. Expertly curated and operated by husband-and-husband duo Wade Parkins and Jason Shelby, the lifestyle boutique boasts coveted brands that can’t be found anywhere else in the Valley—including MM6 Maison Margiela, KKRA, Rachel Comey and Comme des Garçons, to name a few.
“What we’ve done is cultivate a very unique, very exclusive boutique not unlike those you find in New York or L.A.,” Parkins says. “But we carry names and brands they don’t. What we’re doing is sourcing specialty apparel and other items from some of the farthest corners of the globe, many of which you cannot find anywhere else. If you’re looking to go out and want to wear something no one else has, this is where you come first.”
We recently sat down with Parkins to chat about all things aesthetic and the challenges of opening a niche boutique during the pandemic.
How does Now or Never differ from other boutiques in Phoenix?
Many of the brands we carry are exclusive to us for Phoenix and oftentimes the entire Southwest. We work hard to secure exclusivity for our customers to provide a shopping experience that’s rooted in discovery and to provide an assortment that is unique and special.
What is your curatorial approach to Now or Never?
Our vision for Now or Never is that of a true lifestyle boutique, offering everything from home decor, skincare, furniture, apparel and accessories to books and works of art. Our philosophy is that if we don’t love it, it doesn’t make it to the floor. Every item is meant to feel special and enhance your life in a certain way.
What were some of the biggest challenges of opening and operating a new (to the area) boutique during the pandemic?
Our biggest challenge has been our newness in letting people know who we are and what we’re doing. But Phoenix has been supportive beyond what we could have imagined. Every day we are completely humbled by the overwhelmingly positive response we have received and the enthusiasm for from the community.
What made you decide to move Now or Never from Tucson to Phoenix?
Many of our customers were driving from Phoenix to shop in our Tucson boutique and it was really at their encouragement that we decided to move and expand our business.
How would you describe Now or Never’s aesthetic?
Modern, unconventional, unapologetic. We want the customer to feel as though they are stepping into our world. It is very representative of our personal style.
Where do you scout inventory from for Now or Never?
From personal relationships having worked in the industry, travel and trade shows in pre-pandemic times, and of course, Instagram.
Who, or what, is your biggest muse?
Art, music, and the young creatives of the world that are pushing boundaries.
How did you two first become business partners? What inspired you to initially open Now or Never [in Phoenix]?
We are husbands first, business partners second. We saw a void in the market for a modern lifestyle boutique and took the plunge.
What were you doing before opening Now or Never?
We left Los Angeles in 2015 to unplug in Jason’s hometown of Tucson. Jason had built a strong career as a retail buyer and trend forecaster and I had been working in digital media representing fashion, beauty and luxury lifestyle brands. We decided it was time to do our own thing.
What is your number one piece of home design advice?
Minimalism is overrated. Surround yourself with things you love and that inspire you.
What is the most coveted item you own and why?
Our Boston Terrier, Ruby. It’s impossible to not feel happy when she’s in the room. Although she’s a part of our family as opposed to a possession.
What changes have you seen in the way people shop during this time?
People are looking for an experience. They want to enjoy the space, to touch the product, and to feel like they are discovering something new. Specialty brick-and-mortar retail will always have a place in our society.
Who is your favorite designer/brand?
Maison Margiela and Comme des Garçons are always at the top of our list for their innovation and unconventional approach to luxury.
What’s next for Now or Never?
We’re currently quietly developing our in-house brand. Additionally, we’d love to bring our concept to new markets as well as new business segments. We have our eye on the hospitality industry.