A big part of my business ethos is being real. I love to relish in the good times, but I also know about the hard times too. Sometimes life deals cards that aren’t what we expected, and we are required to face facts and often these are sad moments in our lives. For these moments I can help, even if it’s only in a small way.
I keep an extensive range of clothes and items in my store for all the occasions that life presents to us. Good and bad. Happy and sad.
It's my absolute privilege when families choose my store to dress their kids not just for birthdays, engagements, communions, and weddings but also for funerals. I dress so many kids and young people for funerals.
While we don't like to talk about them much, funerals are also a celebration of life, and choosing the right outfit to wear to honour a person is an integral part of belonging.
I guess drawing from my experiences, in that I have lost friends, all grandparents, and a parent, my dad, I have an absolute understanding of how hard the task is to dress everyone in the family for funerals. It's excruciating! It is honestly the last thing that you want to do. I will never forget my experiences of having to do just this.
From when customers come into my store to when they reveal they need outfits for a funeral, I see (and feel) all the emotions from that point on—the heartache, the absolute grief-stricken kids, and adults during the worst time of their lives.
I've had to console so many parents, grandparents, aunties, uncles, and of course kids. I draw on my experiences, emotions and well empathy. My understanding of how they are feeling right at that point, I just go with it, with patience, and whatever is required to help them get through it. I allow clothing to be taken (without payment) to try at home if the experience is too much. I sometimes take over, work with the kids, and allow the adults to take a seat, breathe, and regroup.
Knowing that I've been able to help is my whole reason for opening my store. My customers have often told me how much they appreciated my help and how I've made the task so much easier for them. I can assure you, being in retail goes a whole lot deeper than a transaction running through my till.
If you think small business owners like me aren't affected by these experiences, think again! Sometimes I've had to have a seat after grief-stricken customers has left the store to work my way through the emotions also. I feel everything they feel. How can you not? My heart absolutely breaks for them. It also brings back emotions for me. I am, after all, only human.
For the happy occasions, like weddings, confirmations, and milestone birthday parties I love it when customers send me photos of their kids a spruced up in their outfits. It brings me so much joy knowing that I had a part to play in another family’s special occasion.
I am so privileged when customers choose my business to buy clothes no matter what the occasion is. From bathers, to bow ties, I’ve got you covered. I've been put on this earth to assist people. Like you, I have good times, hard times and sad times in my life too. Afterall, we’re all in this together.