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Howie Mandel boosts Windsor’s BB Branded Boutique

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

By Dalson Chen, The Windsor Star

Downtown Windsor clothing store BB Branded Boutique just received a high-profile boost from an unexpected customer: Howie Mandel.

The comedian and television host appeared on the Today Show on Wednesday morning wearing one of the store’s exclusive Win City T-shirts.

“We’re astonished,” said store owner Ayad Saddy. “I didn’t think it was going to happen, but he said he would.”

Mandel picked up the T-shirt when he visited the Ouellette Avenue business last week. He was in town for a performance at Caesars Windsor on Sept. 13.

“He just walked right in,” said store manager Tony Oliverio. “I let him do his thing … I said, ‘Hey, you look familiar.’ He looked up and smiled. I just kept it professional and talked about our clothing lines.”

After purchasing several pairs of imported pants, Mandel inquired about a display of Win City gear — the store’s own brand of Windsor-centric clothing.

Saddy said Win City’s distinctive logos were designed to raise the community’s image.

“I saw there was a gap in the market, as far as things that are pro-Windsor,” Saddy said. “I wanted something where you could say, ‘Hey, this is our T-shirt.’ You know, you got your ‘I love NY’ T-shirts? Well, we wanted something that’s cool, that’s original, that represents us.”

Saddy said the response has been terrific: Since the collection’s launch this summer, Win City shirts have been among the store’s best-selling items.

BB Branded Boutique celebrated its 10th anniversary this year. Saddy said the store’s philosophy is “cutting-edge street lifestyle.”

For example, the pants with gathered cuffs that Mandel bought — made by California-based Publish Brand and Australia-based Zanerobe streetwear — aren’t available anywhere else in the city.

“We’re a sneaker boutique first, but when it comes to clothing — we gotta be ahead,” Saddy said. “We go very exclusive, we go very tight. When we get a product, we have the rights for all of Windsor.”

BB Branded Boutique is located at 347 Ouellette Ave. Open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday to Thursday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m on Sundays. Online: www.bbbranded.com.