After shopping in the big box stores on Black Friday, we hope you got some great deals! It's always exciting to buy for others and to snag them precisely what they wanted for that discounted price is a win/win all around. It seems as though Black Friday creeps into Thanksgiving earlier and earlier every year. As much as I love a good deal, I love just taking the day with the family and giving thanks with little interruption.
With that time I am always able to reflect back and also get inspired! Today is small business Saturday, and although as a company we don't have a sweet deal to announce, we instead have amazing small business friends we would like to shout out and encourage you to check out their businesses and buy a unique gift for that special someone or even yourself!
As a small business owner myself, I highly encourage everyone to shop small every day and not just today. The people behind the businesses we often support in a Facebook like or an Instagram heart are often working long hours, pouring their heart into their businesses, and supporting their families in a completely different way most don't realize. We LOVE every customer, client, guest, and product because it is the result of our hard work but, not only that, it is the result of our passion being appreciated and seen.
Here are a few of my favorite small businesses to shout out this Small Business Saturday!:
Nathalie, the owner of Pause & Paint, is such a kind woman with so much passion for creativity. We met when the community I lived in was helping me raise money for Wigs For Kids, our annual charity event. Nathalie travels to your home, venue, etc. and teaches a painting class. She donated a portion of everyone's fee to benefit the fundraiser. Soon after, I reached out to her again, and without question, she came out the day of the event and painted live for the show. Her business is an excellent idea for that personal touch to a private party where you can gather your friends and family and do something creative. She has a range of options that can fit any group and the best part; she comes to you! What a fantastic gift of creative fun with the ones you love.
. This is Nathalie passing along the check that benefited Wigs For Kids after our paint event! Always have pink somewhere, representing BE.
We are BIG dog lovers at BE. We often bring our dogs to work, and many of our artists are big lovers of their pups. Pretty Pups and Mutts is an establishment in Wethersfield, CT that is owned and operated by a young woman that took a leap of faith and succeeded! She was my dog groomer years ago, and I followed her when she ventured out. It is not only my favorite place to bring my dog, but they are also my absolute favorite to chat with and share business advice even if it's small tips when I am swinging by to drop my pup off. Brittany is a dedicated owner that has so much love for her pups, for your pups and her business. She stands out to me as a real entrepreneur and reminds me so much of when I first started. If you live in the area, you cannot go wrong with bringing your pup in. With that said, what a great gift to grab a gift certificate for someone that has a love for their pets as much as we do. Whether it's at Pretty Pups & Mutts or another favorite groomer you know, a great gift would be something for their furry family too!
How Bazaar is a great place for that vintage lover looking for that unique find. Located in West Hartford and owned by Latoya Lashell Gibbs. I met Latoya after attending business classes at the Women's Entrepreneurial Center. When listening to her speak about not just her business but her love for fashion it was infectious watching her face light up. She is such an amazing soul and free spirit. I have had the pleasure of watching her grow, and her store is a hidden treasure. If you have someone to shop for that you want to give a one of a kind unique vintage piece too, you will likely find it at How Bazaar!
It goes without saying that Lucy Partyka is one of the best estheticians in the state of Connecticut. Her spa, Art of Touch, has won numerous awards over the years and her staff is always sure to leave you walking out refreshed and rejuvenated. Art of Touch is one of my favorite spas to visit. After my husband bought me a gift certificate here on a whim, he wouldn't have realized he stumbled on the exact place I was hoping to find locally. When you spend your money at a spa, it is an investment for you! Personal self-care and taking time for yourself is a must, and whether it's visiting for you or buying a gift for someone else, you can never go wrong! The atmosphere is always peaceful, and the staff is friendly and accommodating. I have been a client now for ten years, and I need to to take my advice to make the time to treat myself soon! Wedding season is quieting down soon so maybe I will! :)
If you are not local to Connecticut, no biggie! You can shop online for this small business. Style Capsoul is a new endeavor a great friend of mine recently launched. Jamie, the owner, is a fashionista, blogger, mom, and everything in between. Her style and love for fashion have been evident over the years through her blog Jamie Ever After. Style Capsoul has an array of beautiful fashions that can fit any lifestyle especially a fashionable mom on the go! She has great deals for the holiday season so, be sure to check it out and get that fabulous outfit for the fashionista in your life.. or maybe you!
. This is Jamie! Did I mention she was once a client!? Beautified her in 2012. Timeless photo by: 5 Diamond Photography.
Shameless plug here, as I am also the owner of Salon Alexander. Salon Alexander is a place of creative freedom and chill vibes. I'm giving the salon a shout out but, I am giving an individual shout out to the stylists and other small businesses within the salon too! The stylists at Salon Alexander offer expertise with a goal of not just great hair but, a great experience. The staff is warm, friendly, and even funny! We also have a new addition, Charlie! She is a Beauty Entourage stylist and recently ventured out to chair renting. We are so proud to support her and excited to have her join us at the salon with her new business also providing hair services. If you need lashes, microblading, or coming soon, skincare, make sure you check out Making Faces. She is currently with Salon Alexander providing a range of services to suit your lash and brow needs.
That rounds up my shout outs for Small Business Saturday. To be honest, I know so many small business owners and my list could go on forever. I am so proud to have not only so many great friends but also other women I know from years of being a small business owner myself. When you shop small, you support young entrepreneurs taking a leap of faith into their dreams, families that have young children or kids heading off to college, and simply put, people. Being a small business owner isn't always glamorous, and the hard work is often unnoticed or unseen. All small business owners deserve a shout out and supporting them is supporting people that chose a path that is not always the easiest but, very much their passion. They will greatly appreciate your business.
Founder of Beauty Entourage: Ashley Stone
Throw back to when I sold just about anything to get my business off the ground. You can see the BE bags that I used to fill with hair accessories for customers getting married! Being a small business owner is quite the journey and I have loved every second of it. Even when I was selling products at shows so I could one day make enough to grow my business that just focused on my artistry. Thank you to all that have supported our small business all of these years!!
If you need any recommendations for wedding vendors, party planning, and anything in between, I am happy to be of any reference. Feel free to comment below or send a private email. Wishing you all the best this holiday season!!
~The Beauty Entourage Family
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