As I sat in Barbara and Elena's (B & E) boutique, I watched them both help their customers not only find something that would suit their fancy, but also help them create a new style with accessories and color. They immediately struck me as two women that are trying to help others with their own style in clothing.
Elena’s in-laws live in Coronado. She and her husband lived downtown for a while until Elena realized she was tired of carting her stroller around and worrying about the safety of her child as they went for walks. Barbara lived downtown as well, and although was single at the time, also felt like Coronado was everything she wanted: places to walk with the safety of a small town.
Barbara Burton and Elena Haley met while dropping their kids off at pre-school in Coronado. They complimented each other on their fashion sense but realized they were shopping at totally different places. Both Barbara and Elena shopped for their friends and got pleasure from other people’s happiness in their style. Elena was a huge fan of online shopping for her daughter and had a realization that she could sell some of her daughter’s outgrown clothes on eBay. She made hundreds of dollars very easily. Soon after, both of them came up with the idea to throw a fashion party at Elena’s home – have women over for champagne, have a make-up artist or nail stylist, and try on clothes. Their first ‘party’ was a big hit and they sold a few thousand dollars worth of outfits. Several parties later, they realized the bedrooms couldn’t be changing rooms any longer and found their current retail location in the summer of 2010.
Interesting moment in their career:
Barbara and Elena supported the San Diego Zoo in collecting used bottles of perfumes from ladies for a project the zoo was undertaking with big cat scents. They campaigned through BE Styled and garnered so much perfume that KUSI featured the two fashionistas with a cheetah (kudos to anyone who has THAT picture)!
Favorite thing about Coronado:
Elena loves the small town feel…and that “even your neighbors keep an eye out for your kids on your behalf…which can be a good or bad thing sometimes.” Barbara loves the convenience: she can accomplish a lot of errands as a busy mom in 30 minutes within town.
What’s your schtick?
“BE Styled is about busy moms or women, getting out of their sweats for a reasonable price,” said Barbara. Both ladies consider themselves to be ‘savvy’ shoppers and hence can pass on their savings to their customers. They are rewarded when someone thanks them in helping them put an outfit together and are then complimented on their style.
BE Styled is opening an online shopping site called Label Maven - LIVE RIGHT NOW!
For those who want a personal touch go BE Styled at:
1113 Adella Avenue
Coronado, California 92118
Tell us your experience with Barbara and Elena at their studio BE Styled...
Akshay facilitates workshops on leadership, communication, and teamwork for adults and children with Ziksana Consulting. Read his Behavior Blotter for more on his work and his observations. If you have any ideas for stories, please contact Akshay at email@example.com
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