WORTHINGTON — Thein Zar Tun always knew that when she opened a shop of her own, it would be named after her daughter, Vylit.
That dream became a reality on Friday, when Tun clicked on the “open” sign to Vylit Fashion and More in one of the suites at 1607 N. McMillan St., in Worthington. Her four-year-old daughter was alongside her to celebrate.
The shop specializes in clothing from Thailand, with selections of traditional Karen and Burmese clothing as well. From brightly-colored little girl dresses to clothing for boys in infant to size 10, Tun also has a wide selection of clothing for women of all ages. Following traditional Thai style, however, they bear no labels identifying small, medium or large.
“We call it a free size, which are small, medium and large,” Tun said. “That’s one size in Thailand because that’s what we wear.”
Tun said Thai clothing is known for not showing a lot of skin, though she does carry crop tops and T-shirts for the younger generation.
“We have a lot of Thai-style dresses,” she shared, adding that her focus is affordable fashion.
The daughter of a local businesswoman — her mom owns Sein Asia at the corner of 10th Street and Fifth Avenue in downtown Worthington — Tun saw a need for more clothing options in the community. While her mom sold some clothing at her grocery store, she just didn’t have the space to display a variety of items.
Tun brought up the idea of a separate clothing store that she could operate, and her mom thought it was a good idea. She, along with several other family members and friends, helped make Vylit Fashion and More a reality.
In addition to clothing, Tun’s shop carries a variety of colorful Thai-styled purses, beauty products, flannel blankets, bed sets and carpets from Thailand. She will soon be adding selections of kid- and adult-sized shoes.
A native of Burma, Tun and her mom spent time in a refugee camp in Thailand before coming to the United States about 14 years ago. They were initially placed in Kentucky, and spent four years there before moving to Worthington to be closer to some family members and friends her mother had come to know in the refugee camp.
Tun was about to start sixth grade when they moved her, and ultimately graduated from Worthington High School in 2018. She had planned a career in cosmetology, completed schooling and worked at a shop in Spirit Lake before deciding the career would keep her away from her daughter more than she preferred.
Now, as a shop owner, she can work and have Vylit with her.
Vylit Fashion and More is open from 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.