Young entrepreneur takes fashion business virtual
UNIONTOWN, Kan. – Think back to when you were 19-years-old. What were you doing with your life? Studying in college? Or maybe working at your first full-time job? Well for Bourbon County, Kansas native, Addy Labbe, it was the year she founded her own fashion business Stylz by Addy. It may seem like an intimidating prospect in the midst of a pandemic. But thanks to a little bit of innovation and some help from her friends she not only persevered, but even found success.
Now 20 years old, Addy has been in the fashion business for almost as long as she can remember.
“I’ve been traveling with my mother for the past 15 years, ever since I was four or five years old. We’ve been traveling and selling jewelry, so I’ve always been in this business,” said Addy.
“Literally since Kindergarten she has been designing jewelry,” said Addy’s mom Amy Labbe.
Addy spends most of her day in a workshop, designing and crafting the items her mother sells to boutiques all over the country. But in her off hours she started a business of her own. Every Wednesday at 5:00 pm Addy and her friends sell clothing and jewelry through Facebook Live.
“It’s a very big learning curve but it’s been fun,” said Addy. “The transition from the first live to our most recent live is way more smoother, way more confident.”
“The first one we were like ‘here are our clothes.’ and that was really it but now we are into the grove of it and it’s just smooth,” Addy’s assistant, Kinlee Batchelor added
Running an entire storefront through a digital space may seem unorthodox but for Addy it’s the only way it made sense.
“This is probably a better avenue for me because we live in the middle of nowhere,” she said. “We’re a homegrown business, a family business. And instead of selling here we can sell online but if you just sell online at a website no one can see the clothing. I’ve been doing this for a long time and I realized (how) much I love putting together outfits and finding things that look good on all body types.”
Even as she forges her own path forward, the young entrepreneur’s not afraid to wear her inspiration on her sleeve.
“I think since she is around so many women owned businesses and they impower other woman,” said Amy. “So they have given her the confidence to take off and do her own thing.
And the confidence to succeed.
The original plan for the business was to save some money for college, but with all of her success Addy says she may have to change that plan.
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