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FAB FEMALE PROFESSIONALS: Boutique Babes

Check it out: We are honored to feature so many Fabulous Female Professionals from all over Hardin County. This is a Q&A-style feature. Each of the 72 lovely ladies answered up to 10 questions about her business or profession, giving insight as to what it means to be a female professional and sharing a bit on how they give back to the area. Featured in print is one answer from each lady, but the full questionnaires are available on our blog, RIGHT HERE. Each day this week we will share a different category starting with Boutique Babes today. The women work retail wonders and I couldn't be more grateful for everything they bring to Etown. Photos by the magical and awesome Elaina Janes Photography.

P.S. I am aware that they are all formatted differently ;)

Ange Deaton, FINE House & Garden


What made you decide to become a business owner? 

I’m a previous business owner, and, after taking time off for my family, it felt like the right time to jump back in and develop an outlet for creativity and entrepreneurship.


How did you get started in your profession? 

As a graduate of WKU in Textiles & Merchandising, I’ve combined this technical knowledge with work experience in sales, marketing, and the community development aspects of the education field to start my local business.


How many years have you been in business/worked at your job? 

We found a home for the FINE storefront in 2017 and opened our doors in 2018.


What sets your business apart from others like it in the area? How does it stand out? 

A large portion of the FINE brand is developed with an experience in mind. Whether one is stopping in for a quiet moment or working closely with us to craft a custom piece, we always hope to provide a customer with something new, inspiring, and forward-thinking—even if it means losing track of time in the shop on a busy day!


What do you love most about your job? 

The best part is it doesn’t feel like one! Each day I have the surreal privilege of unlocking the doors, taking pride in the space, and spending time with our FINE family and friends. 


How does your job help local ladies? 

We hope FINE inspires women, young and old, to go for it. It’s never too early or too late!


If you had one piece of advice for women entering your line of work, what would it be? 

In an age of quick shipping and cookie-cutter, trend-driven design, it’s important to keep an eye on quality. Understanding (and trusting) the manufacturing processes behind the product we sell and recommend can help remind us of the financial and time-heavy investment many customers make in decorating their homes—investments to which our name will be attached for years to come. In the end, trends will pass, but the product will stay!


Is there a quote that makes you feel empowered or pertains to your line of work?

"We can make a little order where we are, and then the big sweep of history on which we can have no effect doesn’t overwhelm us. We do it with colors, with a garden, with the furnishings of a room, or with sounds and words. We make a little form, and we gain composure.” – Robert Frost


https://www.finehg.com

https://www.facebook.com/finehouseandgarden

https://www.instagram.com/finehg/


Amy Baldwin & Kasey Moreman, Swanky Shoppe


What made you decide to open a boutique?

Amy: I became a boutique owner because I wanted to learn something new. I have a Master’s Degree in Education, but I wanted to challenge myself by trying something I was interested in learning, but that was outside of my field of knowledge. 

Kasey: I decided to become a boutique owner because I love fashion and gift-giving! Plus, I love the flexibility of owning my own business with my partner!

How did you get started in your profession?

Amy: My business partner, Kasey, approached me for a couple of years about going into business together. She thought we would complement each other, and she was right!

Kasey: Honestly, I just jumped right in! I have always loved creativity, fashion, and people, so this job seemed to be the perfect fit! 

How many years have you been in business/worked at your job?

Amy: Swanky Shoppe openend in 2015.

Kasey: I started Swanky Shoppe, alone, with mostly monogrammed gifts about eight years ago. Amy and I became partners and made the shoppe what it is today going on six years!

What sets your business apart from others like it in the area? How does it stand out?

Amy: Swanky Shoppe has gifts and apparel with preppy style and southern charm for women, men, and children. We carry well-known, popular brands such as Vineyard Vines and Draper James. Additionally, we offer to personalize clothing and gift items.

Kasey: Our business Swanky Shoppe stands out because of our combined style and our love for our community! We were one of the original boutiques downtown and have loved watching it grow! We have something for everyone and every age: Babies, Children, Women & Men. Plus, we keep the items unique and interesting!

What do you love most about your job?

Amy: I love the fashion!

Kasey: I love my job because I have the best partner! We make even the boring jobs fun! 

How does your job help local ladies?

Amy: We want residents of Hardin and surrounding counties to be able to shop in Elizabethtown and not have to travel to a bigger city, like Louisville, to see, feel, and purchase nice, classy clothes and gifts. 

Kasey: We have helped local ladies by giving them a unique place to shoppe! It's our favorite thing to help the ladies in our community dress to stand out!! 

If you had one piece of advice for women entering your line of work, what would it be?

Amy: I would advise a future boutique owner to have an excellent team of support in the shop and behind the scenes.  

Kasey: My advice is to love what you do and find a way to make it work in your life! Owning a boutique is hard, but Amy and I have found a way to balance motherhood and ownership. We are very lucky to have each other! 

Is there a quote that makes you feel empowered or pertains to your line of work?

Amy: “A goal should scare you a little and excite you a lot!” ~Author Unknown

Kasey: Not necessarily a quote, but our motto has always been "Kindness, Preppy, Classy & Southern," and we stay true to all those things. It shows in our shoppe and how we run it. 


https://www.theswankyshoppe.com

https://www.facebook.com/swankyshoppeky/

https://www.instagram.com/theswankyshoppe/


Kristin Hardcastle, That Cute Little Shop

What made you decide to manage a retail store?

I love playing dress-up and making people feel good about themselves.


How did you get started in your profession? I have always had a passion for fashion & making women feel good in their own skin.


How many years have you been in business/worked at your job? Four years at That Cute Little Shop.


What sets your business apart from others like it in the area? How does it stand out? That Cute Little Shop offers women and junior clothing in sizes XS-3XL, monogramming, gifts, and accessories.


What do you love most about your job? I love meeting new people from all walks of life each and every day, along with making them feel amazing in their own skin.

If you had one piece of advice for women entering your line of work, what would it be? LOVE your job!

Is there a quote that makes you feel empowered or pertains to your line of work?

"Style is something each of us already has; all we need to do it find it." -Diane von Furstenberg


If you are a mother with children living at home, how do you balance work and motherhood? You just make it work. It's what mothers do!


https://www.thatcutelittleshop.co

https://www.facebook.com/thatcutelittleshop2/

https://www.instagram.com/shopthatcutelittleshop/


Dawn Priddy, Priddy Jewelers


What made you decide to become a Gemologist? How did you get started in your profession?

I have always been fascinated by the facets of precious gemstones, and I wanted to know more about the stones that I so adored. I started working at Priddy Jewelers when I was 12 years old with my dad, a 2nd generation jeweler. I have been hooked ever since! As I stood there at 12 years old, looking at all the diamonds and thinking of the journey that the stones had to take to get from the ground across seas to Kentucky in a finely-designed piece of jewelry boggled my mind. I had to know more!


How many years have you been in business/worked at your job?

I have been in the industry officially for seven years.


What sets your business apart from others like it in the area? How does it stand out?

We are a local, family-owned jewelry store. Our goal is to build long-lasting, multi-generational relationships. We educate and guide our clients to ensure they are confident in their purchasing decisions. We love to hear their love stories. We hope that every one of our customers would refer us to family and friends without hesitation.


What do you love most about your job? 

What I love most is creating the symbol of love for a couple that they will wear for a lifetime and will be passed down from generation to generation. It’s the look in her eyes when she sees the ring that he designed with her in mind! It’s such a beautiful thing that I have the honor of being a part of. 

Are there any special challenges you have faced as a female in the jewelry industry? How do you overcome those?

When I travel to jewelry shows to pick new designs to bring back to the Priddy Jewelers, the amount of times the mostly male vendors have completely ignored me is innumerable. I have overcome this with time and respect but also knowing my true worth. Their opinions of me do not affect how I see myself and my job. If anything, I can take it and grow through it and become better. 

How does your job help local ladies?

I find that jewelry is empowering. Jewelry, much like makeup and clothes, is a physical manifestation of how you want to portray yourself to the world, and you own it! When you purchase that special piece for yourself, and you look at it, you are reminded of how you earned it and feel more confident and powerful through it. 


If you had one piece of advice for women entering your line of work, what would it be?

Start small and build! It takes time to form a diamond. 


Is there a quote that makes you feel empowered or pertains to your line of work?

"No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." - Eleanore Roosevelt


http://priddyjewelers.com

https://www.facebook.com/PriddyJewelers/

https://www.instagram.com/priddyjewelers/


Stephanie Walker Sondergard, Walker Lane Boutique


Walker Lane opened May 2014 in memory of my Dad, the late Mayor Tim Walker. I had a passion for continuing his vision for downtown and a passion for fashion as well. I love helping every woman that walks through our door find that perfect look they are seeking. I want them to feel comfortable shopping at Walker Lane and love whatever they leave here with!

Favorite quote: Coco Chanel, "In order to be irreplaceable, one must be different."


https://www.facebook.com/walkerlaneboutique/

https://www.instagram.com/walkerlaneboutique/


Dana Garrett & Deana Wheeler, Raiment + Boon


What made you decide to become a small business owner?

We grew up in a family business, so it's really been second nature to us our whole lives. We had no doubts our future held a business of our own, and when downtown Elizabethtown began the revitalization, we knew we wanted to be a part of it. We are all about building the life (and community) you want.

How did you get started in your profession?

I (Dana) worked in retail for about five years. I started as a sales rep when I was 16 years old and ended as a store manager when I was 20 years old. Deana has always had a passion for and eye for style, so it was just a perfect match!

How many years have you been in business/worked at your job?

We just celebrated our second anniversary!

What sets your business apart from others like it in the area? How does it stand out?

Our goal is to bring unique, quality items to our community, not something you can find at your everyday retailer.

What do you love most about your job?

Helping women of all sizes to find something that they feel confident in.

Are there any unique challenges you have faced as a female business owner? How do you overcome those?

I think in general, just being a female business owner can have it's own perceptions and challenges. I oftentimes feel many see those businesses as 'hobbies' and not something that is contributing to their families and communities. Overcoming that comes with demanding a seat at the table and showing you have just as much value and contribution as anyone else.

How does your job help local ladies?

Our hope is that our store is a place where everyone feels welcome and is a place where they can just be themselves. This world can make you feel you have to act or look a certain way, but we don't buy that. We are quick to share our good, bad, and ugly because that is reality and we've learned that when you find others who have been there, done that, or are going through that, it is so encouraging and gives you the hope that you can get through it too. It's more than just clothes at Raiment + Boon. It's about building connections, relationships, and a supportive community to all women.

If you had one piece of advice for women entering your line of work, what would it be?

Just do it! Don't wait for the perfect moment or sign; just take a leap of faith and do it!

How is it being a mom and a business owner?

Dana - Having been a working mom my whole motherhood, the only real difference is our kids get to (or maybe HAVE to is a better word choice) be a part of it. There are many days we have one of our kiddos at the store with us, and honestly, we love that. Not only the fact that means we are able to spend more time with them, but they are also learning first hand what hard work and success look like, and hopefully those qualities will also become second nature to them.


https://www.raimentboon.com

https://www.facebook.com/raimentandboon/

https://www.instagram.com/raimentandboon/


Erica Covell & Teresa Bennett, Lady Lu Boutique


What made you decide to open a boutique?

Erica: I believe God uses us to help people with similar struggles that we go through. I felt like starting a boutique is our way of helping other women overcome any self-image/body issues that are similar to the ones I struggle to overcome.

Teresa: My daughter Erica, lots of prayers, and a dream are the reasons I decided to join the boutique/business world.


How did you get started in your profession?

Erica: My husband and I started screen printing in 2014. I wanted to focus on women and jumped into the boutique world. My mom stepped in and completed the team!

Teresa: I saw the passion my daughter had for what she was doing with in-home and online sales. She talked about feeling led to help women of all sizes to feel more confident with who they are. We spoke about her dreams, we prayed together, and we decided to move forward as a team.


How many years have you been in business/worked at your job?

Erica: I started the boutique officially from home in 2017, April 2018, my mom joined, and we opened the mobile boutique, in April 2019, we opened our storefront!

Teresa: We started with a mobile boutique "Lady Lu comes to you" and then transitioned to a storefront in April 2019.


What sets your business apart from others like it in the area? How does it stand out?

Erica: I believe we stand out by focusing on ALL sizes of women. We strive for everything we put in our store to be in small-3X. Women aren’t made to fit a certain mold, and we work hard to help women understand that and feel empowered.

Teresa: I would have to say what sets us apart is the fact that we strive to accommodate ladies of all sizes, small through curvy.


What do you love most about your job?

Erica: I love seeing ladies smile when they look in the mirror, I love the impact it’s had on my personal growth, and I love working with my mom.

Teresa: What I love most about my job is the fact that we are a family-owned business. Most of our family members have contributed their time, talents, and support. I feel we relay the family atmosphere to our customers.


How does your job help local ladies?

Erica: Our business helps the ladies in our community feel comfortable in their own skin. We give them a place where they come to find a new outfit, and leave with a boost of confidence.

Teresa: Our job is to help women feel comfortable, confident, and beautiful.


If you had one piece of advice for women entering your line of work, what would it be?

Erica: For women wanting to open a boutique, do your homework, be ready for a rollercoaster ride of emotions, and make sure you have an amazing “why” behind opening your store. Knowing what you are fighting for every day will keep you going.

Teresa: Be flexible, believe in the power of prayer, and remember nothing worthwhile comes easily.


Is there a quote that makes you feel empowered or pertains to your line of work?

Erica: Our motto on our store window and in all of our live videos was from an unknown author, “It’s not about the size you wear, it’s about how you wear your size.” In a world that judges every inch, we want ladies to wear their size with confidence!

Teresa: Lady Lu motto, "It's not about the size you wear; it's about how you wear your size."


https://www.llcurves.com

https://www.facebook.com/ladylucurves/

https://www.instagram.com/ladylucurves/


Sarah Sprague, Black Sheep General Store


What made you decide to open a store? How did you get started in your profession? I’ve been a part-owner of The Black Sheep General Store for seven months now. I always wanted to open my own shop, but the reality of it really started several years ago when I first opened my own craft business and began working out of my home and traveling to craft shows. This turned into hosting craft shows, and I knew then that I eventually wanted to have a brick and mortar place where many of the craft artisans and artists I met along the way could exhibit and sell their work year-round. An opportunity presented itself when I least expected it. Everything happened quickly, and pieces seemed to fall together really easily at that point, and here we are now with our very own storefront in downtown Elizabethtown! What sets your business apart from others like it in the area? How does it stand out? What do you love most about your job? How does your job help local ladies? The Black Sheep is different from anything in town. We have all handmade or hand-crafted items- all from Kentucky artisans. Roughly 90% of our vendors are women. As an artist, I know how hard it is to get my work out there. As a female artist, I personally often lack the confidence to put my work out there and sometimes feel like maybe I lack the guidance on how to present it and sell it. I wanted a place that would allow people to get their work out there on display with minimal effort or stress. And a process where they didn’t have to worry about how it was presented - we take care of all of that. I wanted our shop to be someplace where sellers could feel confident in their hard work and final product. Our collection of pieces and products are as unique and diverse as the vendors that sell them. It’s really quite beautiful. I love being able to give artists and artisans a place to feel confident in selling their work. And I equally love giving the community a place to buy quality handmade work from local creators. If you had one piece of advice for women entering your line of work, what would it be? Being a woman in the workforce comes with its unique set of challenges, and they, many times, are unique to each woman as well. My advice would be to work hard, don’t be afraid to ask for help, and don’t’ give up on living out your goals and dreams. Being a ‘boss lady’ is definitely one of the wildest and crazy rides I’ve ever been on, but it’s also so beautiful and rewarding.

Is there a quote that makes you feel empowered or pertains to your line of work? "One woman’s success can only help another woman’s success." - Gloria Vanderbilt I love this quote specifically for The Black Sheep. It goes for both men and women, but If I’m successful with my business, it brings success to my vendors. If my vendors are successful, it brings success for me and my business. It goes both ways! I love my job, I love my business, I love my vendors and will always encourage someone to step out of the box, try something new, push yourself, and you will succeed!!!


https://www.facebook.com/theblacksheepetown/

https://www.instagram.com/blacksheepetown/



Deb Sullivan, To The Nines Boutique & The Teal Door


What made you decide to become an owner of a boutique?

I’ve always loved fashion and staying on-trend. My family and I prayed about it, and the Lord just continued to open doors.


How did you get started in your profession?

I’ve always loved fashion and staying on-trend. I started out making scarves and selling them to a boutique here in town and around the state. I expanded to selling jewelry, and that is when I started thinking more seriously about opening a boutique. My family and I prayed about it, and the Lord just continued to open doors.


How many years have you been in business/worked at your job?

Five years in the boutique world and three years in the event rental/venue


What sets your business apart from others like it in the area? How does it stand out?

We strive to make sure we deliver excellent customer service. Being honest with our customers about what looks good on them is also very important to us. I never want to sell something to someone, just for the sake of making a sale. I like to see customers come out of their “comfort box” by adding pops of color with their jewelry, shoes, and accessories that can really make a difference in a new top, dress, etc.  


What do you love most about your job?

I really enjoy helping people make good wardrobe decisions. In these last five years, I have found that so many ladies do not have the confidence to choose outfits/accessories that complement their individual style. Those are the ladies I love helping the most. As probably one of the more “seasoned in life” boutique owners in town, it is a little more challenging to stay on-trend, yet classy. Once you hit that 50 and over mark, things just have to change with your wardrobe. Like it or not, we can’t dress like our daughters and pull it off successfully. You still want to look and feel your best in what you are wearing, but you have to be so much more conscious about what is appropriate.


How does your job help local ladies?

From the Teal Door venue space standpoint, we are a part of ladies celebrating some of the most important days of their lives - from getting married to celebrating the birth of their baby. Our space is just so intimate, with elegant charm, that it helps to make these occasions so much more special and memorable. 


If you had one piece of advice for women entering your line of work, what would it be? Talk with people in the industry/type of business you want to enter or start. Most people are willing to let you know about the do’s and do not's, of what worked and what didn’t for them, so don’t be afraid to ask.


Is there a quote that makes you feel empowered or pertains to your line of work?

I have several (mainly by Audrey Hepburn and Coco Chanel), but will narrow it down to two: “Nothing is impossible. The word itself says I’m possible” -Audrey Hepburn and “A girl should be two things: Classy & Fabulous" -Coco Chanel. I love a third one, from the Bible: "She is clothed in strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future." - Proverbs 31:25

https://www.facebook.com/totheninesetown/

https://www.instagram.com/totheninesetown/


Amanda Burris, Type A Style

***Not quite a boutique, but this gal is our favorite local fashion guru. Follow her on Like


What made you decide to become a fashion blogger?  

After searching for a creative outlet to occupy my mind and extend my personal resume, I decided to share my love of fashion and interior design through a lifestyle blog. I’ve always had people ask me where I purchased my clothes, interior design tips, what hairspray I use, etc., and I would always divulge the awesome deals I got with it all. So I thought, why not monetize off this skill and share my passion for affordable fashion and design with the world.

How did you get started in your profession? 

I pretty much woke up one day and decided I wanted to start a blog. And it has been full-force ever since. When I first started, I spent countless hours building my brand- through research, blogging courses, website building, social media engagement, photoshoots and editing, and so much more. But what most people don’t realize is that work never ends. Behind every blog post are endless hours invested in photoshoots, photo editing, content planning, search engine optimization, etc. and that investment is required to push you forward and make you stand out in an industry that is so saturated.


How many years have you been in business/worked at your job?   

2.5 years


What sets your business apart from others like it in the area? How does it stand out? 

While I would like to think my natural talent for fashion and design is the sole driver in my success, I would have attributed it to two things: authenticity and affordability. I think by sharing the latest trends in a budget-friendly manner allows others to relate and realize that modern style is obtainable and replicable. My brand is me as a personality, so also making sure people see the truth and reality through a screen is what sets my business apart. 


What do you love most about your job? 

Getting to connect with different people across the world, but also being able to connect with people locally that I wouldn’t have otherwise. I love the opportunities this venture has given me within my own community and surrounding areas, and I get to share how awesome Kentucky is with the rest of the following world. 


How does your job help local ladies? 

I love to feature local brands and sales to encourage my followers to shop locally. I have lived here my entire life, so seeing the major growth that has occurred within our town the past decade makes me so excited, and I love to share that with my followers. Whether it’s a sale at a local boutique, new coffee special, or a local event, I share it all.

If you had one piece of advice for women entering your line of work, what would it be?

BE YOURSELF. Everyone has their own story to tell, and if you remain true to yourself, people will want to listen. Don’t compare yourself to others. You are on your own path, and in the end, authenticity is what sells! 

Is there a quote that makes you feel empowered or pertains to your line of work?

“You Can Never Be Overdressed or Overeducated.” -Oscar Wilde


Love her looks? You can follow along with all of Amanda's fashion finds on Facebook and Instagram, but our favorite way to make the most of following bloggers and influencers is on LIKEtoKNOW.it. It is the easiest way to shop looks styled by your favorite influencers, wearing your favorite brands. Find exactly what you’re looking for from wedding guest dresses, ankle boots, and trench coats to faux leather jackets and leopard slip skirts from over 4,500 different retailers. Get the app and be sure to follow Type A Style.


http://typeastyle.com

https://www.facebook.com/typeastyledesign/

https://www.instagram.com/type.a.style/


Are you loving these ladies too? Tag us when visiting their shops and use the hashtag #elizabethtownlifestyle. If you don't already, check us out on Facebook and Instagram to stay up-to-date on the latest happenings with Elizabethtown Lifestyle and local community events.


Tune in tomorrow for more Fabulous Female Professionals and always remember to shop local Elizabethtown!!



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