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San Clemente Journal

Lil Z’s Something for Everyone

Sep 30, 2021 08:16AM ● By Nina Welch

Niko Haghnazari, Evet Sahakian and Lil Z (Zoe). Michelle Marie Photography

By Nina Welch

The owners of Rocket Fizz, Evet Sahakian and Niko Haghnazari, opened Lil Z’s at 204 Ave. Del Mar on May 21st. Early morning walkers can stop just past El Ranchito to peruse the intriguing windows of this new store, which is named after Evet and Niko’s baby, Zoe. Female T’s and mugs with funny sayings, the Bearington Collection baby feeding set, and even a baby onesie that says, “Hi I’m new here,” might catch the eye causing them to want to venture inside when the store opens.

Evet and Niko had been pondering the idea of opening another store on Del Mar, but after Zoe was born everything shut down due to Covid. Then when Angel’s Wings closed and the space was empty, Evet knew they needed to lease it due to the prominent Del Mar location. “When we finally got it, Niko and I walked around the store wondering what is the need here,” Evet said. She figured out that shopping local is the key, and with Zoe as her sidekick, she wanted an atmosphere where they could shop together as she grows up.

Thus … Lil Z’s has something for everyone. A customer can shop for a bride, a baby shower, a new homeowner, a bachelorette and more. But the surprise upon entering the store, are the gag items such as Real Housewife and Schitz Creek coloring books plus adult humor cards, coffee mugs, candles and T-shirts.  

Moms can find Olive and Scout baby clothes and there’s an entire arts and crafts section for kids. Prices range from $10 to $500. High ticket items include: a Bentley tricycle, scooters, bassinettes, name brand diaper bags, and DockATot baby mattresses. And Zoe’s Playhouse is an added attraction, so moms can bring their small ones and shop small in a place with a fun and bright vibe with happy music and an open concept.

Evet’s retail background is evident due to the success of Rocket Fizz and her concept for the new store. She was VP of marketing for a start-up company in the Bay Area for seven years. While there, she learned about digital merchandising and the spending trends of high-income families. After eight years, the company sold to their competitor in New York, and instead of taking the job offered to her, she and her husband decided to move to San Clemente. They bought Rocket Fizz where she put her skills to use. The store went from almost shutting down to a 50% revenue increase in the first year. 

And when asked who Lil Z’s customers in the new store are, Evet said with a smile, “Anyone with a sense of humor.” 

Insta: @thelilzshop.

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