Fashion was never something that was on my radar in college when I was trying to figure out what I was going to do the rest of my life. Like the normal teenager right out of high school, I juggled the idea of multiple different career paths. I finally landed on Interior Design - a career I was passionate about and could enjoy doing the rest of my life.
My junior year, I began an internship with a local interior design shop. The owner allowed me to sell my refurbished furniture in her store. It didn’t take long for me to see that my unique pieces were selling much quicker than other items. Due to the recession at the time, I needed to help my parents with rent on their three childcare facilities – which sparked an idea.
In February of 2009, while I was still a senior in college, I opened Riffraff with only $100. I began by selling my refurbished and hand-painted furniture, but quickly expanded to include clothing and small gifts when I realized those were the items that would turn over more quickly. Many critics thought opening a small business amidst a recession was a terrible idea – and don’t get me wrong, it was no walk in the park – but with hard work and unbeatable customer service, I turned my dream into a reality.
One relocation, four renovations, and nearly eight years later, I employ over 30 young women all under the age of 26! Together, we work hard while still keeping an upbeat and fun atmosphere in the workplace. (You should definitely check out my Snapchat (@kirstenblowers) for some of the shenanigans and office pranks that go on behind the scenes.)
I love this business and all the trials and triumphs that have come along with it. I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for it. Thank you to everyone who has supported me and this crazy idea I had almost eight years ago.
P.S. I have been recognized by some legit organizations for my success in the small business world. Check them out below!