I'm so excited to introduce you all to the second installment of my "Let's Chat" series, just another way for us to get to know some of my favorite small business better. Today, meet Brit and Ben of James Society, an online shop that sells a unique mix of vintage and handmade items. I first found James Society's Etsy shop when searching for items for a Things That Caught My Eye This Week post, and I was immediately enamored with the stunning photos and gorgeous items to match. It's fairly obvious from first look that the items in the shop are handpicked carefully, and every piece has has that rare quality of being effortlessly trendy, yet classic. As if the vintage pieces weren't enough, James Society is stocked with handmade items as well, and trust me, they're just as good.
Brit took a moment to answer some of my questions, and you learn more about James Society after the jump.
Ben and I have known each other for at least 13 years. We grew up in the same small town and to think we would end up marrying each other still blows our minds! With a little bit of luck and circumstance, the "re-connection" was magical!
How and when did the idea for James Society start?
About three years ago we decided to sell vintage clothing online. I had worked retail for so long and just didn't love the idea of going back into a store that wasn't mine. I knew Ben and I had the key essentials to building ourselves a unique online business. Not having to outsource as compared to many businesses gave us the confidence to get started.
What is your favorite part about running an online boutique?
Being able to push boundaries and having complete creative freedom. I don't have to go through a middle person (middle people!) and I can sell to my customers directly without someone telling me no. (or having to sell something I don't love!)
What has been the most challenging part?
Time. Making personal choices about limiting free time and learning to say no. If I took advantage of not having to clock in everyday, I would have no shop! This has been a very hard challenge in our first years. I do know the importance of balance but sometimes it's just not realistic at first. We want to put everything we have into this.
How would you describe the James Society girl?
Fearless. Fun. She doesn't take herself too seriously and loves trying something new!
What is one thing about James Society that sets it apart from other online stores?
I would have to put the spotlight on Ben. Our photographs are very important to the way we sell. We want our shoppers to truly get an idea of what the product would look like in their wardrobe. I like to call our product "lifestyle products" and capturing them in that way is very important. I am so lucky to have him. What he does, truly sets us apart.
Lastly, are there any exciting plans for the future of James Society that my readers can look forward to?
Oh, my! We are constantly changing. More bags! And we have just paired with my sister-in-law on a home goods division called The Territory. It's driven on things we fancy for the home and less on clothing. A lot is happening and we would love for everyone to stay in touch!
Now, for the best part, Brit and Ben are kindly giving away a one-of-a-kind handmade clutch. To make it even more enticing, this one was made especially for this giveway, and I'm sure you'll be as fond of the palm tree print as much as I am. All you have to do is enter through the Rafflecopter widget below. And even if you don't win, you can still get some James Society in your life. Brit and Ben are offering 20% off with the code "room334.
(This giveaway is open until midnight on April 2 and is open internationally)