Tax Free Weekend is always a big weekend for anyone in retail, especially if you run a small town boutique (with big dreams.) I look forward to this every year because it is almost like small business Saturday. Our store gets filled with folks looking for a great deal and the government allows them to save a little bit more too... just when they need it most.
When you think "school supplies" you automatically think a few pencils, a notebook, maybe a binder, get ready for the new math: "The average K-12 parent will spend $100 per student on school supplies this year, up 12 percent from last year." According to TODAY.com. When I think of school supplies of course I think of those essentials but as a owner of a clothing store, I think of the possibilities of clothing these sweet kiddos as they head out the door to a world of adventure; and of course school.
I guess when I was young there weren't many opportunities to model, dress up, and have fun in an event like this -especially around Greenbrier. That perhaps is one reason I loved pageants so much; but that basically is where this whole "fashion show" idea stems. Our Back-To-School/Fall Fashion Show was a great opportunity for girls to have this avenue. Our show was also great way for community outreach to young women locally in high school who could potentially turn into loyal customers along with their friends and family. Planning it around tax free weekend was a no brainier as well, because believe it or not school starts in one week. While technically Arkansas does not see the 50-60 degree temps until November, it is great to see the Fall fashions and transition items that are great for any wardrobe and any age... even if its 94 degrees the first few weeks of "Fall." Thank you to all of my models that were able to help me out with our fun show. You were all such a blessing and beautiful inside and out! There were over 40 girls that applied; and while I could only choose 15-20 girls I wished that I could have had them all. They were all so magnificent! Thank you to my "Tiny Team Southern Savvy." All of you girls hold a very special place in my heart for one reason or another and I adore all of you. I hope you will do this with me until you are all big girls.
Our show was a complete success! With the help of several local businesses, I can not thank you gals enough for your support with the fashion show! Before I get into that, I want to say a HUGE thank you to our FABULOUS customers that shopped with us this weekend; and shop with us all the time. We are in business because of YOU! THANK YOU for feeding our families. Also of course THANK YOU to the girls that made the show actually happen. My girls. My Team. Team Southern Savvy. I love you girls so much. You all offer your individual talents to the table in one way or the other with a smile on your face and I love you all so much. Kristin, (my store manager) I can not thank you enough for keeping me sane. Keeping me on track. Keeping me from loosing all of my marbles; even though I'm sure they are already lost. I don't know what I'll do when you move on to bigger and better things. I love you so much. Yesterday would have not been possible without you. Seriously. From us going to market, running out of gas on the interstate... LOL!!! to us discussing different styles, planning, to us setting up and getting ready. This show wouldn't have happened without you. Alexis, Ali, Alyssa, Sydni, and Hadlee... you all know what you did... setting up, keeping everything together, helping backstage, cleaning up... loving on Myleigh Pearl. I adore you girls. Thank you once again. Thank you Conner for tying our string to hold the fabric and cleaning up. Thank you Rachel for helping Friday and taking one for the team with your stab wound (LOL) and thank you to my awesome friends Crystal Reed and Miss Debi for the gossamer. It transformed the vacant building and the look of the show wouldn't have been possible with out your help!
Thanks again to Jennifer Merritt for showcasing her applique and monogrammed apparel. You can of course purchase her original designs from Southern Savvy year round, but it is nice to see the face that makes these precious items. I am so grateful you came. Thank you once again to Meredith Post for showcasing her talents with Glow Aesthetics. Her new business in Greenbrier is one you will definitely want to check out. Thanks again ladies!
Another business that I adore is The Shoe Choo of Conway. Yesterday someone said, "Ashton you really bragged on them... I'll have to see what they have!" Yes, you should! They are more than just kids shoes! They can help you with newborn to pre-teen boy or girl with the cutest clothing and accessories. They also have a great selection of back-to-school gear as well. It hands down is my favorite store for Myleigh Pearl. (We have a Converse and Giggle Moon addiction.) While we are truly not a "kids" store and only offer a tiny TINY little selection, (I call it our last minute mom selection. LOL) I send people constantly to see my friends there because I adore the people behind The Shoo Choo. They have been a great asset to Southern Savvy and cheerleaders for my store and I can't thank them enough for their friendship.
Lastly, I want to thank Courtney Stell and Christie Hensley for their talents. They both worked on the models making sure they were ready for the runway. Courtney spent time picking all of their great shades of lipstick, and making sure they looked perfect. Courtney's love for makeup and her eye for fashion is second to none. Her business selling LipSense has really taken off and I hope it continues to do so. If you have any questions about LipSense or heck; make up in general she is a great go-to girl. She has been a great friend of mine for quite some time and I am so honored she could be there.
.... and then there is Christie... I could sit here and talk about her forever. She has been a great friend of mine over the last year. Not only has she been a great customer but she has been the biggest cheerleader of mine. I seriously am mad at the universe for not placing her in my life sooner. She is constantly a light that I love to follow because it is so bright. Her personality is contagious and I can't thank her enough for her friendship. Before the show started I told her to give me a "Boutique owner hairstyle" and she did just that. It was more of a tamed down poof than I usually have and I loved it. LOL!!!
Thank you everyone that came out to support these girls..... and while it is now raining like crazy here at the store, (we were originally going to have it 3 PM Sunday) and even though it was SO CROWDED I am thankful we did it inside... and yesterday of course instead of today. It all worked out. I am a firm believer in "Babes Supporting Babes," if you couldn't tell with all of that estrogen I just wanted to thank again and the whole reason behind this blog post.. But seriously, any opportunity I have to brag and promote a fellow women business owner I do. I think you should too! Teach your children this! Maybe that is what is wrong with this world. Women, support other women! Learn from them. Love them. I think we might wear bras for a reason... to remind us we need and should offer SUPPORT to other women. LOL. Or maybe it's because we don't want the girls hanging everywhere. But you get what I'm saying. On the application to become a model, I asked them..."What are your favorite words to live by." One of the girls wrote, "I'd rather be kind than cool." I immediately knew she had to join the team. That idea of being kind to others is something I wanted to rub off on those girls especially with heading back to school. I hope that message came across during the show and more importantly when you come in our store. Come see us this week while we still have our Back-To-School specials going on and don't forget to SHOP LOCAL. SHOP SMALL and of course shop Southern Savvy!