40 Waltham St., Boston
Home to artists and restaurateurs alike, the SoWa (South of Washington) district of Boston’s South End has transformed from an area once known for mills and warehouses to a mecca of modern creativity, attracting small businesses and their customers for the past decade. One such addition to this thriving neighborhood: M. Flynn Accessories, a 5-year-old boutique owned by sisters Moria and Megan Flynn. Inside the bright white showroom, M. Flynn boasts a mix of fine estate jewelry, customized pieces, and guest lines at what Megan calls “a giftable price point.” The scent of freshly cut flowers and Tocca candles fills the air, and colorful candy jars of Smarties and Ring Pops create a refreshingly playful atmosphere.
It’s hard to believe the sisters were once wholesaling out of the second bedroom of Moria’s apartment and wondering if they’d ever get out of their pajamas. Their showroom sits just a block from where a shared hobby became a business partnership. “It was so serendipitous,” says Megan, twirling a pair of M. Flynn’s signature stackable rings. Originally created as a custom design, the $1,400 Bamboo Diamond Band, offered in 14k rose, white, and yellow gold, is now a fixture in Faire La Fête, a chandeliered room adjacent to M. Flynn’s costume line. This juxtaposition illustrates the M. Flynn philosophy that “someone who loves jewelry wears every kind of jewelry”: “I love the idea of pairing a diamond bracelet with a $14 bracelet,” Megan says.
ONE OF A KIND
Moria’s interest in CAD has become one of the store’s biggest selling points. Already known for their engraving, the designers now offer a personalized customization process for clients looking to reinvent heirloom pieces or create one-of-a-kind engagement rings. The sisters share a story about a man who insisted that they create a bright pink engagement ring for his bride-to-be. “We originally went with a soft pink, but he wanted it even pinker!” recalls Moria, who eventually settled on a dark pink sapphire, centered among diamond petals. “I want it to be unique, but I always design with the idea that it should also be timeless.”
Though this sweet little boutique tucked away in an artist studio still stocks familiar lines from names such as Erickson Beamon and Alexis Bittar, M. Flynn’s goal is to offer “something different from what Neiman Marcus carries,” Megan says. Even though Bittar’s line is mass-produced, she admires the designer for pushing the limits of fashion jewelry—something she and Moria try to do in their own line. “You have so much freedom when creating a piece of costume jewelry,” Megan explains. “You can show creativity without price as a constraint.” M. Flynn also features smaller lines from designers who surprise and inspire them. The Ropes Maine, for instance, offers bracelets made of colorful nautical rope—just one example of M. Flynn’s mix-and-match philosophy. “As a boutique, it’s really important to us to keep it unique,” says Megan, who makes a point of bringing in designers who “don’t do what we do.”
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