We love inspiring stories from amazing people across the globe who are doing great things. This week’s feature focuses on Chloe and Connie Harrison owners of Chloë Ellis, online clothing boutique for women.
Who are Chloe and Connie Harrison?
Like Mother, like daughter… My Mother and I have always loved fashion since as long as I can remember. We both always knew that we wanted to open up a business that would showcase the beauty of women, but was always a little discouraged by all of the competition, the time, and the expenses involved with the launch of a new start up business. In fall 2015 together, we made the decision to step out on Faith…
My mom (Connie Simone) is a small town girl from Beaumont, TX. To say she was going to go into the fashion industry after high school was not the “accepted” career choice where she comes from. She decided to follow the norm by going to Nursing School and becoming a Registered Nurse (a career more acceptable), despite her passion for the fashion industry. She has always had a unique eye for fashion as well as an extensive knowledge for fabrics, patterns, colors and textures. Her travels abroad have enhanced her creativity in fashion, something that she is eager to share with women globally. To see all of her talents go to waste would be her giving up on her God-given purpose in life.
I (Chloe’ Harrison) have a bit of a different story, I’ve always had a creative side and an eagerness to be an entrepreneur but a lot of times I did let my fears and my shyness hinder me from going after my dreams of being a business owner in an industry that I love which is fashion. I took all of the right steps by getting my Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, obtaining a career in the merchandising industry as an Assistant Buyer and gaining a vast amount of experience to make for a killer resume. Deep down however, I knew that God wanted me for something more. I found myself waking up every day knowing that God awarded me a job that would give me just the skill set that I needed to launch my own company. God had a bigger plan for me than just a 9-5, he was ready for me to take a risk and step out of my comfort zone.
The two of us decided to join forces to make a killer mother/daughter duo combining my business savvy mindset and her unique eye for fashion to birth the one and only Chloë Ellis Online Boutique. Our brands mission is to enhance woman globally by not just selling them clothing but selling them the confidence that they need to take a risk like we did.
What is Chloë Ellis?
Chloe Ellis is an online clothing boutique targeted to women ages 18-34. The lady who shops at Chloë Ellis loves timeless & one of a kind quality pieces that will enhance her wardrobe. She is not defined by who the media makes her out to be, but sets her own rules keeping her morals and values top of mind.
What made you leap forward to make the first step to becoming entrepreneurs?
We decided to take a leap of faith when all of the pieces started falling into place for us. One day my mom and I had brunch at one of our favorite spots in Dallas and noticed this painting on the wall that led to the inspiration of the Chloe Ellis Brand. It was one lady fully clothed walking toward a crowd of men all staring at her. This picture embodied exactly how we want the Chloe Ellis woman to be. She was dressed like a lady while still having the ability to grab the attention of the crowd because she has a confidence like no other and her beauty shines through her soul. From that day forward ideas sparked left and right for us and we knew that it was a sign from God that this was something that he was calling us to do.
How did you know this is what you wanted to do for sure?
I think the moment our brand became something more than just selling clothes and became something that’s bigger than us, something that would enhance women across the globe; we knew that we had something great, and that this was something worth taking a risk for.
So after getting set up, what were the setbacks and what did you do to improve?
We’ve had a few setbacks since the launch of our business but it’s just part of the package when you are a new business owner. The biggest challenge has been not having the capital to fully launch our business the way we would have liked to.
Hiring a Marketing Manager, increasing our inventory, having a launch party, putting on fashion shows, doing photo-shoots, joining organizations sending out mailers, etc. are some of many things that we would like to do once we begin to see an increase in revenue.
Another setback that we have faced is that my mom and I are both very soft spoken & introverted people and in order for any business to be successful, marketing is key. Social media isn’t my strong suit and being bold enough to let the world know that Chloë Ellis is in town hasn’t exactly come easy to us either. We learned that it’s important to find someone to offset us in the areas that we are the weakest. We may not be out going enough but we are looking to find someone who believes in our vision and is willing to help us with the marketing aspect of our business since this is an area of weakness for us. It takes a team to build something great.
Do you have any featured products, sales, promotions, launches – etc? Tell us about them and what inspired them?
We will be offering 25% off with free shipping using promo code “Ladylike” at checkout (effective for the month of May 2016 offer valid on all items). Also stay tuned for an official Chloë Ellis launch party in Spring ’17.
Tell us something unique about Chloë Ellis that sets it apart from your competitors?
Our tagline “Bringing Lady back…” is what makes our clothing brand unique. We are living in an over-sexualized world that’s constantly trying to tell us as women who we are and what we should be. The Chloë Ellis brand is not just about selling clothes but selling and restoring that confidence back in our women.
What is your advice to people having a fear of launching their business?
When you think of owning your own business you think of the financial freedom and how fun it seems to be a business owner but a lot of people don’t think about all of the blood, sweat and tears that it takes to get there. I would be lying if I said there wasn’t a time where I wanted to give up on Chloë Ellis altogether but there was that burning fire inside of me to keep fighting.
The best advice that I could give new entrepreneurs is to not compare yourself to other entrepreneurs. There are a lot of times I got discouraged because there were girls younger than me who came from wealthy families who had the money and the network to fund a new business and were living their dream faster than me. In the beginning stages of a new business you have to constantly remind yourself that you have a different story to tell from other people and you need to define success in a different way than someone who’s already launched their business and is successful. You have to go into each day and do better than yourself every day, go into each day with a plan of how you are going to get yourself one step closer to that end goal and find accomplishment and success in that.
Where and how can people find you?