Altar’d State isn’t your typical clothing store. Located in West County Center, its motto is “Stand out. For good.” By supporting communities locally and around the world, that’s exactly what it does. One percent of all sales go to charities, plus an initiative called Mission Mondays donates 10 percent of every Monday’s proceeds as well. Since 2009, when the first store opened in Knoxville, Tennessee, the company has given $2.1 million to needy causes, and has sponsored children in high-risk areas of Peru by providing them with nutritional, educational and psychological support. The company has committed more than $200,000 to fund the development of a high school, a humanitarian aid storage center and a chapel. In addition, it looks for partnerships with vendors who share its philosophy of giving back. “It is not just what we do, it is who we are,” says Aaron Walters, chairman and CEO. “From the very beginning, our mission has been to help the less fortunate. We want to do more than provide fashionable alternatives to young women who want to make a difference. We want to inspire a movement.”

OBC-cbl-3During January and February of this year, the store, which has operated locally at West County Center since 2014, donated Mission Monday funds to Crisis Aid International, which established its first U.S. refuge for American victims of sex trafficking in St. Louis in 2012. Last year, the company supported organizations that included Susan G. Komen and Stray Rescue of St. Louis.

As the name suggests, Altar’d State is built on a Christian foundation. Contemporary Christian music plays in the stores, and the website grants ‘prayer requests’ to online shoppers. The target audience, management says, “is the woman with a busy life, looking for something to give her a unique style and make her stand out.”

As far as doing good for humanity, what could be easier than purchasing a piece of clothing? Altar’d State’s spring fashions are floaty and flouncy, romantic and frilly. Fabrics are splashed with flowers and stripes, drenched in solid, bold color or muted in creams and fawns. Looking for a dress? Give back with a floor-length maxi, a cinched romper, an airy smock. Breezy blouses have crocheted hems and lace backs, and delicate bits of embroidery. Skirts are gauzy. There’s a distinct bohemian feel to these clothes, a weekend easiness.

“Retailers are becoming much more conscientious when it comes to their local communities. We are seeing a real trend in stores wanting to make a difference,” says Justine Robinson, marketing director for CBL & Associates Properties, which operates West County Center. “And more and more, we see consumers who are interested and excited.” She says other businesses in the center also are raising money for national and local causes. “It gives so much more meaning to our purchases,” Robinson says.

Altar’d State, a national company with a store at CBL & Associates Properties’ West County Center, donates 1 percent of all sales to local and international charities. For more information, call 314. 238.1661 or visit

Cover design by Julie Streiler | Photos courtesy of Altar’d State
Pictured above: A summer sheath from Altar’d State