OWOSSO – Two friends have been so successful with their online womenswear business over the past 11/2 years, they are now opening a storefront in the city’s Westtown.
Kylie Kingsbury, 27, of Lennon, and Jordyn Trzcinski, 31, of Durand, will host a grand opening of Blu Ashe from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on November 13 at the store, 806 W. Main St. The public event will be free. . café by Foster Coffee, and the Nom Nom Ninja food truck will be there.
The co-owners said they owe their big brick-and-mortar move to their loyal online customer base, 80% of whom are local.
“We wouldn’t be able to do this without all of our loyal customers,” said Kingsbury, who, along with Trzcinski, still manages Facebook Live sales at 7pm every Thursday. “We are opening this store because they wanted more of us. They wanted to touch the clothes and try them on.
She and Trzcinski were happy to welcome their clients, renting out the long vacant building and working hard since October 1 to put the 1,100 square foot space in shape for business.
Renovations include exterior paint and a courtyard, and a bold, sleek look inside: white walls highlighted by an emerald green wall, rustic tables, black wall pipes, and a walk-in closet with velvet curtains black and a neon sign above it saying “You are really pretty.”
“We created the interior of the store ourselves,” Kingsbury said. “It was just a slab of cement when we walked in there. We put our personality into it. “
Customers got to know the two women during their weekly Facebook Live sales, where they answered questions and just chatted.
“Our customers already know our personalities,” Kingsbury said. “We want them to come into the store and say, ‘This is exactly what I expected. “”
Facebook Live allowed the couple’s customer base to see them in weekly live videos, but it’s a two-way mirror: Kingsbury and Trzcinski can’t see customers.
“We are very excited to meet them in person. We are dying to put faces to their names, ”Kingsbury said.
Blu Ashe offers “trendy and affordable” clothing for women ages 20 to 59, accessories, shoes and products made in Michigan. The candles, a popular item, are specially designed for Blu Ashe and have 25 different scents personally selected by Kingsbury and Trzcinski.
The women both grew up in A Coruña, graduating from Lycée de Coruña. Kingsbury works full time as an accountant, while Trzcinski is a part time manager at Chip’s Place.
They started Blu Ashe almost like a lark. Kingsbury thought about opening an online women’s clothing store and was so excited she called Trzcinski at 3 a.m. one morning to share the idea. After just an hour of talking about it, the women decided to give it a try.
“We were both at home during the pandemic and these online stores were killing him,” Kingsbury said. “We made a business plan and got it, and here we are.”
The original goal was to move into a storefront five years later, but the popularity of Blu Ashe online has pushed the timeline.
The brick-and-mortar operation is debt-free, Kingsbury said, funded entirely by the co-owners.
“We have worked very hard to get to where we are today without any financial help from anyone,” she said. “We are proud of it.