Tell us a little bit about yourself?My name is Renee and I hail from the suburbs right outside of Chicago, IL. I run a clothing boutique called 11 Eureka. I live with my boyfriend (the love of my life:) and our dogters (a.k.a. daughters) Gretta and Marley who you will see splashed across the website and blog about from time to time. I am a lover of all things color, mini weekend trips, music, and gardening. I have two sisters who are my closest friends (although we can argue like champs), and a mother who inspire me daily.
How did your blog & shop get started?I graduated with a bachelors in fine arts and concentrated on Interior Design but always had a secret obsession with clothes, so when an opportunity was presented to me, I jumped head first.
I was given a chance to manage a small boutique in my hometown. This was a crazy roller coaster of a ride! I learned to hire and fire employees, buy new/ manage inventory, create displays, and mostly organize everything all while working my day job at a construction company. After three years, we decided that the location was not right for out overall look and it was time to shut down. Devastated, I decided to start my very own boutique. This took exactly 1 year to plan and design before the site was up and running. I must say that I learned so much in that year, in fact, my head is still spinning:)
After the site went live, I created the blog as an additional creative outlet and everyday I get to obsess and indulge in the world of fashion!
What inspires you the most?This has to be the hardest question to answer only because EVERYTHING seems to inspire me! Ok, if I have to really think about it, I am inspired from a few favorite fashion blogs (Little Tree Vintage included), everything Free People offers, and mostly nature.
What advice do you have for anyone who is looking to open up their own online shop?
Be true to yourself! When I was managing the boutique, I stocked the store with items I was NOT in love with but thought they might sell better then something I loved. I found that although it may sell, it compromised the overall feel and flow of the store.
When I opened up my online boutique, I decided to stock items I not only loved but would wear myself. It is ok if the style is not for everyone, but when someone does come across our website, hopefully they will find something colorful and a little special:)
What are your future goals & plans, where do you want to be in 5+ years?
I would love to be able to run 11 Eureka Boutique with my sisters while traveling for new goodies and be free of the 9 to 5 job! I love to work, but I want the strings cut and the website allows me to do that:)
Also, fashion trends change from month to month, so I am excited to see what direction we (the store) are headed into in the next few years!
Find 11 Eureka on (Facebook) & (Twitter), also be sure to check out their site for some fall shopping!