In this week's episode I sit down and chat with Carolina Brown, owner of Rok 'n' Ell Baby Boutique. We discuss her small business journey and what it's like to have a small business at Weymouth Corners.
EPISODE DATE: 4/11/2019
In the beginning of this episode I make a couple announcements related to our sponsor Badfish. The first is really only a reminder to use the code "HelloSP" which will get you 10% off your next Badfish purchase. It's been brought to my attention that a few people have mentioned the podcast and mentioned that they heard that Badfish was the official carrier of all Three Eyed Fish merchandise, but haven't been using the podcasts promo code - gotta use the code to get the discount! . The second is that I will be doing a Badfish giveaway on my instagram. So be sure to follow the podcast's instagram (@hellosppodcast) if you haven't already. I also talk about the cover of the April issue of the San Pedro Today magazine as it features our local icon the Three Eyed Fish, an image that Badfish owns the exclusive copyright to. This cover story features an interview with the original artist of the Three Eyed Fish and his motivation to paint it. Lastly,, I address some technical difficulties I was experiencing throughout the recording of the episode, so if you haven't heard it yet, you've been warned!
Carolina was born and raised in San Pedro and has been a teacher within the community for many years. After her daughter gave birth to Roko and Elliot, she decided to start a baby boutique named Rok 'n' Ell. Carolina and her husband now own the charming boutique located at beautiful Weymouth Corners. She shares how overwhelming it was at first to own a business but her and her husband quickly got the hang of it and have been consistently growing in business ever since. Carolina also shares what it was like growing up in San Pedro.
Carolina on growing up in San Pedro:
"'Oh it was wonderful. As a child I loved San Pedro. I remember traveling around town on the bus, my mother didn't drive, both my parents were from Italy, and Beacon Street at that time was pretty bad and I remember specifically telling my mother that when I grew up I was going to be the mayor of San Pedro and clean things up."
We do discuss some of her shop's biggest challenges and one of them is online shopping. She had initiated an effort to sell online and actually made it available for one year but after extremely low online sales she decided to pull back her online inventory. It's apparent that she has strong feelings about local consumer's pride in shopping at major online retailers and she compares it to leaving trash on the floor. What I took from this comparison was that she sees online shopping as a direct effort to not take care of our "home" or community. I share my concerns in this matter as well. We address these issues and talk about what it could mean for our small business community.
Carolina describing the "essence" of San Pedro :
"'It's a working class community. It's not just a bedroom community. People don't all work in LA, they live and work here, you know, because of the port and the waterfront. And that started with the fishermen and the canneries... San Pedro is unique in that, in that we live and work here, so I'm very proud of that."
Carolina shares her excitement for the changes coming to the waterfront and may even consider starting something in the downtown area.
Rok 'n' Ell
Rok 'n' Ell Instagram