Originally Answered: How hard is it to own a clothing store?
Hi, presently retailing is very hard and most likely will get harder. Both the economic crisis and online shopping are much damaging it.
However, to survive one needs to adapt. And some shops are doing just that. One way is to have a themed shop (say just "Gothic-style" clothes), rather than sell a wide range of bland lines (like most shops do). Another is to use the physical shop mostly as a showroom, where the full catalogue is available online (virtual). Another method is to be a focal point for your local community, say having a creche for busy mums. And another is being mostly manufacturing/adapting/customising/repai... shop for online items.
The last business model is probably an option for your clothes boutique.
You already have a passion for fashion design and a vision of your business. These are the right starting positions.
As you know already, you need much 'startup capital' (to buy your premises, equipment, etc). I guess retail space will be, however, significantly cheaper as the leasers will be desperate for paid occupiers. This is obviously to your advantage.
A recent trend is "pop-up shops". These are when you would only rent a shop on a short-term temporary basis. Even just a week! This enables you to test the market before commiting all your money to it. I strongly advise start this way.
Meantime spend your spare time learning about the fashion industry. It's textiles, tailoring, designing, presenting, etc. See what trends are happening and try designing along those lines. And build up a Portfolio of your own designs. And study Fashion Design at college/university. Or if you cannot wait for, or afford to, employ a qualified designer to work in your shop. In this case ensure you get some business management training.
Keep that vision in your mind and strive for your dream. Good luck....