As a community advocate, Chess said it’s really important to her that everyone feels comfortable coming into the store.
“It’s okay to wear African attire,” she said.
Chess has roots in West Africa and recalled wearing African clothing sometimes as a child. She said she likes the bright colors and different patterns of the clothing.
Having an African shop in Fairborn was important to Chess because the city was once a sundown town that excluded blacks, she explained.
She also wants the community to know an African boutique is open to all. In the future, she hopes to expand the shop and add a tea room.
“I am really excited about what it’s going to bring,” Chess said. “My doors are open to anyone that wants to visit.”
African Utopian Boutique, located at 422 W. Main Street in Fairborn, is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday.