How long have you been in business?
Since March 2012
How did you come to be the owner of Bella?
I started off working as a sales associate for the previous owner. After a period of time, we became business partners and ultimately I bought her out becoming the sole owner.
What inspired you to get into the retail clothing business?
I’ve always had a passion for clothing, fashion and I love working with people. After completing an undergrad I decided to do a post-grad in fashion business.
How do you market your business? How are people aware of your store?
Bella is very much a neighbourhood store – over the years I’ve cultivated a relationship with many women and most are repeat + regular customers. Word of mouth is huge, also with social media being such a massive part of all of our lives – it’s played a key role in widening my clientele base which has been so great.
What brands do you carry?
Constantly on the lookout for new lines: LNA, AG Jeans, Generation Love, Velvet, Rails, PJ Salvage, JBrand…
Can you describe your customers?
Very wide range of age groups. A woman who likes to shop in a more curated environment without having to look through racks and racks of merchandise. She has to be an efficient shopper.
Favourite thing about being an owner?
I love clothing, fashion – and helping women feel good in what they buy from me. There’s no greater satisfaction for me than when someone leaves here with pieces that make them feel confident & beautiful.
What is the hardest part of owning and running a business?
I’d have to say the biggest challenge year after year has been finding trustworthy staff. Being a small business owner means wearing many hats – buyer, sales, marketing, etc. Having employees who you can rely on & delegate tasks to is important in order for me to do the rest of my “job” well.
To what do you attribute your success?
Cultivating relationships with my clientele. Being in the store, speaking to women about what they’re looking for.
If you had one piece of advice to someone just starting out, what would it be?
Make sure you are doing something you love to do as it is not easy.
Be sure to visit the Bella website and follow Bella on social!
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