The story of Hattie’s Branches Boutique begins in 1992 when co-owners, Amanda Hermann and Mandy Middleton met as middle school students at the same performing arts middle school. Following middle school the two went their separate ways; however, fate crossed their paths again in 2009. Their friendship was instant, and a partnership developed effortlessly. Both friends were looking for something big and meaningful to do with their lives. Mandy had always loved fashion, and Amanda had always dreamed of opening a boutique. It took little convincing for the two to follow that dream, and with the help of Amanda’s mother, Judi Hermann, the third co-owner, the idea for Hattie’s Branches Boutique was born.
The idea to name the boutique after Amanda’s late grandmother and Judi’s mother, Hattie, was cosmically confirmed when Mandy learned that her great-great grandmother on her maternal grandfather’s side and great-great aunt on her maternal grandmother's side were also named Hattie. As such, all three owners represent Hattie’s Branches. The branches of this artistic and fashion-minded family tree represent the various facets of fashion: apparel, shoes, and accessories like handbags and jewelry. The shop opened in November of 2009.
The Hattie’s Girls, as they are affectionately known, share a philosophy of fashion centered on a belief that every woman, regardless of age, should feel beautiful and confident in her skin. They are passionate about helping women realize their potential in their outward appearance, but even more importantly, as a reflection of who they truly are. The Hattie’s Girls strive to empower women to feel not only beautiful, but special, strong, and self-assured. Their success in achieving that goal is what keeps customers coming back and becoming like family.
Amanda was born in Grand Rapids Michigan and moved to Lakeland in elementary school. Educated at the Laboratory Institute of Merchandising in New York, New York, she worked in the fashion industry as a sales assistant, a merchant assistant, and an assistant buyer. She has one beautiful fur baby, “Lily.”
Mandy is a third generation Lakelander. She went to school for Voice Performance and Fashion at Florida State University.
Prior to opening Hattie’s Branches Boutique, Mandy dabbled in a little bit of everything! Her proudest accomplishment (aside from her son) is singing as an Equity Performer with the 'Voices of Liberty', an a capella group, performing in the American Adventure Rotunda located at Epcot in Walt Disney World. She has one beautiful, bouncing, baby boy, James Brice, “J.B.”
Judi was born in Detroit, Michigan and attended Marygrove College in Detroit. During college she worked to create fashion window displays. Today she designs semiprecious jewelry for her line, “Heart’s Design.” She also paints, sketches, and teaches art and creative movement classes. Judi is married to Tom Hermann and has two amazing children, Jason and Amanda, as well as one precious fur baby, “Griffin.”