Sima Ruth Blue: ‘Savvy Retailer,’ Owner of Trillium Boutique

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Sima Blue owned Trillium, a boutique in Green Spring Station, for close to 27 years. (David Stuck)

Just six short weeks after Sima Ruth Blue, long-time owner of Trillium boutique clothing store in Green Spring Station, closed up shop to retire and relax, she died and was laid to rest at Baltimore Hebrew Cemetery on Monday. She was 76.

Blue, who died Feb. 3, took over Trillium in 1992 at age 50 after more than 10 years as a counselor with Associated Jewish Charities (now The Associated: Jewish Federation of Baltimore) and running the Macy’s men’s personal shopping service for Maryland stores.

When asked about why she decided to make the leap to owning a business at 50, Blue told the JT in December that she thought at the time, “‘I’m going to do this.’ And I loved every minute of it,” she said. “It was successful and it was the best thing I ever could have done.”

At Trillium, Blue was known as a consummate professional, bringing her personal flair and understanding of fashion to her many loyal customers, who found the personal service, including in-store fittings and alterations a cut above most clothing stores of the time.

“She knew her customers. She knew what they liked, even down to the color,” Nancy Grasmick, former Maryland state superintendent of schools and a Trillium customer, told the JT in December. “It was so personalized. You don’t see this in big stores anymore. Where someone is so attentive to every customer.”

Green Spring Station co-owner Thomas L. Peddy of Foxleigh Enterprises, Inc., called Blue a “preeminent” and “savvy retailer.”

The boutique had been at the shopping center since its opening in the mid-’70s. Blue had been the owner for close to 27 years.

“Sima was an incredible retailer and a mainstay in our ongoing success as a fashion destination,” Peddy said on Monday. “[Sima] knew her customers well and bought to their advantage. She had a regular following from the area, but also had customers that came from out of state.”

Peddy said each time Blue’s lease came up for renewal, the company would ask if she was thinking of retiring.

“The answer was always the same,” he recalled. Blue would say how much she loved what she was doing, that she enjoyed buying jaunts to New York and elsewhere, and every day she had old friends visit in the store. “It doesn’t get any better than that,” Peddy remembers Blue saying. “And she would sign up for another three years.”

“Year after year, economy good or bad, Sima’s business was consistent,” he added. “She had quite a following and will be sorely missed.”

Following a bout with cancer, Peddy said Blue “felt the time had come” to retire.

“We’re closing because I’m going to be 77 in February,” Blue said in December. “I need to move on in my life now. I’ve done this almost 27 years and I’m ready for some new adventures in my life.”

Blue is survived by children Michael Blum (Jamie Shor), Jennifer (Jay) Rubin and Jeffrey Blum; grandchildren Lily and Evan Blum, Jordan and Max Rubin and Sophie, Rachel and Sam Blum and her partner Martin Parks. She was the wife of the late Dr. Larrie Blue and daughter of the late Sally and Sylvan Rosenthal.Just six short weeks after Sima Ruth Blue, long-time owner of Trillium boutique clothing store in Green Spring Station, closed up shop to retire and relax, she died and was laid to rest at Baltimore Hebrew Cemetery on Monday. She was 76.

Blue, who died Feb. 3, took over Trillium in 1992 at age 50 after more than 10 years as a counselor with Associated Jewish Charities (now The Associated: Jewish Federation of Baltimore) and running the Macy’s men’s personal shopping service for Maryland stores.

When asked about why she decided to make the leap to owning a business at 50, Blue told the JT in December that she thought at the time, “‘I’m going to do this.’ And I loved every minute of it,” she said. “It was successful and it was the best thing I ever could have done.”

At Trillium, Blue was known as a consummate professional, bringing her personal flair and understanding of fashion to her many loyal customers, who found the personal service, including in-store fittings and alterations a cut above most clothing stores of the time.

“She knew her customers. She knew what they liked, even down to the color,” Nancy Grasmick, former Maryland state superintendent of schools and a Trillium customer, told the JT in December. “It was so personalized. You don’t see this in big stores anymore. Where someone is so attentive to every customer.”

Green Spring Station co-owner Thomas L. Peddy of Foxleigh Enterprises, Inc., called Blue a “preeminent” and “savvy retailer.”

The boutique had been at the shopping center since its opening in the mid-’70s. Blue had been the owner for close to 27 years.

“Sima was an incredible retailer and a mainstay in our ongoing success as a fashion destination,” Peddy said on Monday. “[Sima] knew her customers well and bought to their advantage. She had a regular following from the area, but also had customers that came from out of state.”

Peddy said each time Blue’s lease came up for renewal, the company would ask if she was thinking of retiring.

“The answer was always the same,” he recalled. Blue would say how much she loved what she was doing, that she enjoyed buying jaunts to New York and elsewhere, and every day she had old friends visit in the store. “It doesn’t get any better than that,” Peddy remembers Blue saying. “And she would sign up for another three years.”

“Year after year, economy good or bad, Sima’s business was consistent,” he added. “She had quite a following and will be sorely missed.”

Following a bout with cancer, Peddy said Blue “felt the time had come” to retire.

“We’re closing because I’m going to be 77 in February,” Blue said in December. “I need to move on in my life now. I’ve done this almost 27 years and I’m ready for some new adventures in my life.”

Blue is survived by children Michael Blum (Jamie Shor), Jennifer (Jay) Rubin and Jeffrey Blum; grandchildren Lily and Evan Blum, Jordan and Max Rubin and Sophie, Rachel and Sam Blum and her partner Martin Parks. She was the wife of the late Dr. Larrie Blue and daughter of the late Sally and Sylvan Rosenthal.

singram@midatlanticmedia.com

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