It is hard for me to believe it has been 15 years since I first launched SensualElegance.com, but it is!!
In 2000, I had split from my fiancee and was living alone for the first time in my life trying to figure out what I was going to do. I had worked for an ad agency and taught video production, but at that time, I was working for a small web hosting company creating websites and not making a lot of money - in fact, the company folded a few years later.
In 2001, I invited a friend who was graduating college in Illinois to move in with me so we could split expenses and figure out our lives. Rebecca did and we were 2 plus size ladies looking to get out there and have some fun! She was the social butterfly compared to my hermit. Problem was, we couldn't find a lot of plus size clothing options in our area in Central Florida.
One day, Rebecca was searching the internet for plus size clothing and found Leg Avenue's website, but then realized it was wholesale only. Knowing my background, that I had set up several businesses in the past and did graphic and web design, she urged me to create an online store. A few weeks later, I had set up LAB Enterprises and launched SensualElegance.com shortly after to feature sexy clothing for all sizes.
The first version of the store was ugly by today's standards, coded by hand with Paypal buy buttons and little style. But it worked, started making sales, and urged me to branch out with other sites as I found more and mroe great wholesale suppliers. Pleaser USA was my first shoe brand I added and I launched GothicPlus.com to feature their Demonia brand of gothic shoes and boots.
Now, 15 years later, I have more than 20 online stores covering different niches that interest me like science fiction, Steampunk, and Metaphysical topics. I've redesigned the stores several times over the years (with another update planned later this year), but have been fortunate to have some truly awesome suppliers and customers.
I feel so blessed to have found a business I love. My favorite part of the business is sourcing great new products you, my customer, will love looking for the smaller shops as well as industry giants for a balance of products in quality and price and items you may not have otherwise had the chance to find and love.
Today, with so many new online stores launching - and many folding before they hit their 2nd year - I really grateful to reach 15 years. Thank you for being my customer and thank you to the great manufacturers I work with every day. Thank you Rebecca for kicking me into action getting the store launched! I look forward to celebrating more milestone anniversaries.