After months of paperwork, designing a website and purchasing inventory, we launched Vestique.com and had an order within moments of posting it on our blog and Facebook. The next few months were insane. We worked full-time in Corporate America and would come home each evening at 5 p.m. and fill online orders until after midnight.
We would stay up until the wee hours of the morning taking pictures and posting new items to our website. We sacrificed a lot, but the orders kept coming and before we knew it, we were forced to take a leap of faith and leave our full-time jobs to pursue Vestique.
What started as an online retail store has since turned into two independent brick-and-mortar, women’s clothing boutiques. Our goal since day one remains the same — to bring trendy, runway styles to the budget-conscious shopper.
Best Success Story:
We’ve had lots of memorable moments of success over the past two years but I’d say one of our most proud moments was the grand opening of our second location in Charlotte, NC.
We did very little marketing, mostly through social media and word of mouth, but the store was absolutely packed and the line at the register never died down. We sold more inventory in that one night than we do during a normal business week.
Biggest Startup Challenge:
Working full-time while trying to focus our energies on Vestique was difficult to say the least. We slept very little during that first year in business and worked around the clock. In fact, we still do. We didn’t get here by luck or chance … it has been solely through hard work.
#1 Tip for Entrepreneurs:
As an entrepreneur, you will face more obstacles than you sometimes think you can handle. There will be days when you want to throw in the towel and go back to a job that can be left at the office when the clock strikes five, but if it’s something you’re passionate about, don’t give up. Always remember, if it was easy, everyone would be doing it.
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Photo Credit: Julie Livingston Photography
Editors Note: Recently, Vestique has teamed up with Mark Christopher Salon for a Charity Fashion Show, benefiting the American Heart Association this Saturday, from 5-8p in Raleigh, NC. Learn more at salonmarkchristopher.com.