Chrissy’s on El Paseo celebrates women entrepreneurs, protects the planet, and makes you look and feel fab.
Story by Amelia Rodriguez
Photography courtesy Chrissy’s on El Paseo
Chrissy Armstrong wants to surprise you. “One of the greatest moments for me is when somebody tries something on and they say, ‘I never would’ve picked that out, and I love it,’” the boutique owner reflects.
After taking over her mother-in-law’s longtime jewelry business vending gems at The Street Fair at College of the Desert, Armstrong opened the brick-and-mortar Chrissy’s on El Paseo in 2020. Offerings expanded to include clothing and gifts. Even in the new space, however, Chrissy’s has managed to retain the intimate, outdoor market feeling — chatting one-on-one with an entrepreneur as you browse their wares.
The key? An ultra-personalized shopping experience. “We cater to anybody, from 20 to 90 years old,” Armstrong explains. “My stylists will give you their undivided attention.” Many of Chrissy’s in-store stylists have worked in the industry for more than two decades, and they eagerly apply their expertise to helping you find exactly what you’re searching for — and usually a few extra things you didn’t know you needed.
Whether you pick out a date-night-ready Norma Kamali LBD or a playful frock from New York–based line Show Me Your Mumu, you’re likely to walk out of Chrissy’s rocking a piece from a woman-owned brand. Chrissy’s stock includes products designed by local ladies, including Armstrong’s own nieces and daughter-in-law. Armstrong extends her pro-woman focus beyond the shelves, too, collaborating with other female entrepreneurs and supporting nonprofits that share her mission.
She also favors companies that use sustainable strategies, from a made-to-order business model to recycled fabrics. “People would be blown away by the amount of waste there is within the fashion industry,” Armstrong emphasizes. “I do my very best to help protect the environment.”
Though Armstrong takes her values seriously, the environment at Chrissy’s is anything but. “We want everybody to have a great time,” the owner says. “First and foremost, [Chrissy’s] is fun.”
Feeling inspired to explore something new? Chrissy Armstrong reveals five trends you’re about to see everywhere.
Fringe: Designers are trading 1970s-inspired leather fringe for daintier metallic strands. “This is luxury [fringe],” Armstrong explains. “It’s silver threading. It’s in the jewelry.”
White Tank Tops: Many major fashion labels sent this perennial classic down the runway this season. “Even Prada put their famous triangle logo on the front of their white tank,” Armstrong reports. “You can dress it down or dress it up.”
Punk-Inspired Styles: Designers are revitalizing the silhouettes, patterns, and details that defined punk fashion in the 1970s and ’80s. Picture studs and patches, leather and tartan, metal hardware and strategic rips.
Statement Jewelry: “Big and bold jewelry is making a comeback. Think of the 1990s and early 2000s,” Armstrong shares. If supersized rings or heavy necklaces aren’t your speed, ease into the trend with a statement earring — chunky gold hoops catch the eye while working for everyday wear.
Rainbow Brights: Back away from the all-black outfit. This season’s most fashionable ’fits embrace “happy colors,” says Armstrong. Go for grass green, butter yellow, or (Armstrong’s favorite) a sweet red-and-pink combo.