We had the good fortune of connecting with Danielle Beck and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Danielle, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I never really had a good idea of what I wanted to “be” when I grew up. I bounced around at all kinds of jobs throughout my early 20’s, but the only thing I really ever loved doing was working at my first clothing boutique. It’s unfortunate but it is pretty common to meet people who think what I do is a “cute hobby”, or how it’s obviously every little girls’ dream to “shop for a living”. It’s also very common to hear the back handed compliment of “Wow! I could NEVER do what you do, I’d be too scared to not have security in my job”. In reality, and if you are an entrepreneur you know, running your own business is one of the hardest, most frustrating, scariest things you can do for a career. At the same time I, like many others out there, cannot imagine doing anything else. When I finally realized that I was not meant to work for someone else, I got to work on building what is now ivy & pine boutique. I started online with a limited number of styles and no real clue what I was doing. I began hosting and participating in pop ups to grow my customer base, and then I opened a small (seriously, it was 100 sq ft) place where I scheduled one on one shopping appointments. This last choice is what allowed me to open my very first brick & mortar store in Costa Mesa. My happy place. My “screw everyone who told me this would never work in-your-face” place. My entire thought process behind starting this company really came down to these few realities; I don’t ever want to work for someone again and I want to be a part of something that makes a difference in other peoples lives. I wanted to create a space that was fun + inviting and inclusive. I knew I couldn’t keep wasting my time working for other people, it was time I took the metaphorical leap into becoming my own boss.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Our Motto is “Cute Clothes for Badass Babes”. Women are not just one thing; you can be feminine and still strong as hell. I work hard to find items that allow you to feel confident, sexy, feminine and most of all, badass! The ivy & pine girl knows what she wants, and isn’t afraid to go after it. She’s your best friend, your confidant, and your partner in crime.
When I was finally able to open up my own store I spent a lot of time creating a vision for how I wanted the shop to feel. My hope is that you feel comfortable and inspired when you walk in, that you feel like you just walked into your friends really cool NY/LA loft. It’s cozy, it’s cute, it’s somewhere you’d want to hang out all day. When buying for my shop, I spend a lot of time researching to find the best brands with the best quality at the best prices. I also partner with local woman owned companies to carry their lines and help promote their brands and stories. I host a Small Biz Pop Up once a month for local companies to come and showcase their designs and creations. Doing my best to support other small businesses is one of the things I am most proud of, since I know how hard it is to get your business off the ground. I worked a full time job for for the first year and a half of starting my business in order to pay my bills, while I built my brand. I was finally able to leave and pursue my true passion full-time and now I can fully enjoy everything I have worked so hard to get. I think the biggest lesson I learned was there is never the perfect time to do anything in life, so if there is something you want to do, do it. If it’s meant to be you will find a way to make it all work.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Luckily here in So Cal the weather is nearly always perfect so if I had a week to show around a friend here’s a peek at our itinerary : Coffee at Coffee Nature, midday smoothies at Nekter Stop in at ivy & pine (we are in the same center with Nekter!), lunch at Mendocino Farms and dinner at La Vida Cantina. If we are feeling touristy we could take a drive out to Balboa Island, or hit the coast and head down to Laguna and check out the shops and enjoy a cocktail at Modern House. For something a little different we could check out the Sherman Library and Gardens, or head to Moro trails for some hiking. There is so much to do here, but the best days are spent supporting local businesses + getting outdoors to enjoy some sunshine!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are so many people who helped me get where I am right now and without them I honestly could not have made it happen. My husband, Mike, who is always my main support system (and the main handy man for the shop). My family for being my BEST customers, and in the beginning some of my only customers. My friends who push me to be better, come to all of my events and swing my by new shop just to say hi and tell me how happy they are for me. And last but not least, Jenny + team at How Novel Communications who have helped me figure out what SEO is, how to create the right marketing efforts and who are just all around great human beings.
Other: Shop location : 474 E 17th St. #204 Costa Mesa, CA 92627