"Boutique" has become a fashionable marketing term, especially in the music instrument industry. I was never fond of this label. Sure, we are a small company—smaller than many companies who market themselves as boutique. And, we adopt many boutique practices, such as personalized attention to customers and local manufacturing.
However, we also adopt many practices used by larger companies, such as automation. Our product designs and production processes are designed to scale up as customer demand increases, which can't be said of most truly-boutique manufacturers. In reality, we are a hybrid.
While we're on the subject, I never liked the "builder" either, as in "pedal builder." We do so much more than simply build pedals: we design, engineer, manufacture, market, and sell pedals.
So, I'm not exactly sure how to label us, but I know that "boutique builder" doesn't fit.