by Kerry Andersen
A day of shopping once meant driving to the mall or your favorite boutique. Now, buying a new outfit or piece of jewelry is as easy as picking up your cell phone. An estimated 49 percent of businesses now have a social selling program and approximately 28% are making plans to add it to their current strategy. Consumers are engaging with social sellers in great numbers; 68 percent have already purchased directly from social media and nearly all (98%) plan to make at least one purchase through social shopping or an influencer this year. Social selling allows you to shop from the comfort of home, but also to engage with sellers like never before through live sales presentations and social media posts curated to your specific interests. In Southwest Louisiana, these social sellers are thriving – many without a traditional brick and mortar location – and supporting a modern wave of female entrepreneurship.
The Brown Bobbin
Lori Miller Brown’s energy bursts through the screen during her live Facebook previews of new clothing and accessories added weekly to her virtual boutique. She exuberantly rattles off details about her fashion finds while interacting with loyal customers known as Bobbin Beauties. Devotees know if they post photos wearing their purchased items or share the live sales presentation on their own social media pages they’ll be rewarded with entries into monthly giveaways or find a prize added to their order. Join Brown’s VIP Facebook group to view inventory and claim an item. Social platforms uniquely allow sellers to connect with buyers through personal stories and passions. Brown founded her business in memory of her mother Patsy as a platform to give back to the community and work closely with her family. The Brown Bobbin offers shipping, but most customers take advantage of ‘porch pickup’ in downtown Lake Charles.
Wardrobe Mobile Boutique
Ashli Waldrep’s passion for fashion and clothes has been a longtime source of personal expression. Now she helps other women build a wardrobe through her unique ‘boutique to go’. Waldrep retrofitted a vintage camper into a mobile boutique on wheels and hit the road. She sets up her trendy but affordable clothing and accessories at local pop-up’s, festivals, and community events helping women of all sizes (XS-3X) find their own personal style and shares her fashion expertise via stylized Instagram posts. Follow the boutique on social media to find out when her camper will be near you or shop her website. Ashli offers shipping or local pickup at 1711 8th Street in Lake Charles.
www.wardrobemobileboutique.com or @wardrobemobileboutique
In 2020, Jenee Wall put her LSU merchandising degree and passion for fashion to work opening her popular social selling business named using the initials of her three children (E-L-M Boutique). Her VIP Facebook group has almost 5,000 loyal customers who connect with her warm personality, eye for detail, and sneak peeks of new trendy items. Elm Boutique thrived and grew into a storefront in Jennings. Customers who order online can pick items up at the store within an hour or have them shipped. A VIP Rewards program and new Text Club keeps Wall connected via technology with customers looking for the latest in affordable fashion and game day looks.
www.shopelmboutique.com or @shopelmboutique
Ivey Girl & Co.
Ashley Ivey-Atkins grew up with curves and found it challenging to find clothes that made her feel beautiful. Her dream to open a boutique found success through social selling. Ivey Girl & Co. partners with local salons and businesses for fun pop-up shopping events. The self-described ‘mother and daughter curvy boutique’ offers fashion trends in all sizes plus jewelry, gifts, and accessories with a fun and catchy motto – Voluptuous. Voguish. Vivacious! Follow Ivey Girl & Co. on social media to find out where Ashley will pop up with her inventory designed to find beauty in every curve or join her Facebook group to view and purchase fashion items for local pickup.
www.iveygirlco.com or @iveygirlco
Harper Elizabeth Boutique
Heather Ieyoub launched Harper Elizabeth Boutique in 2022 with her daughters’ middle names providing the inspiration for the boutique they run together. Dubbed ‘fashion with a sweet southern charm’, Ieyoub offers the latest styles, classic pieces, and vintage selections. New collections launch weekly in the boutiques Facebook group offering limited runs of affordable fashion. Customers can shop via Facebook with local pickup at Project Fit on Nelson Road or in-person at intimate Sip & Shop events or pop-up’s. @harper.elizabeth.boutique
Catina Guillory Coats teamed up with her mom Vee McNabb to open their trendy and size inclusive (XS-3X) Ryan Street boutique. The shop and website specialize in denim and shoes plus cute tops to help women feel their best. Catina Couture recently launched a customized app so customers can view fashion preview videos and shop their favorites straight from their phone. Shipping or local pickup.
www.catinacouture.com or @catinacouture, 2801 Ryan Street