Mandy Phillips: store owner and Boss Lady, mother, daughter, sister and friend - a special person to all that know her. She recently celebrated SEVEN years of B.loved in Downtown Canton, that's ten years total for her business. As some know, Mandy started small. B.loved was 100% online before she ever dreamed of a home town store front. Actually, Mandy admitted she never consider Canton until it happened. "We didn't live far... I grew up in Cherokee County and went to Sequoyah High but never thought I would have ended up where we are!"
I wanted to go back the very beginning, before B.loved was ever a thought at all. The truth is Mandy grew up a tomboy running around wearing gym clothes and playing sports. To this day you will almost always find her in something comfy. It wasn't until her sophomore and junior year of high school that she developed an interest in fashion, then completed her senior project on owning a boutique. After graduation she continued her education at American Inter-Continental University where she earned a Bachelor's of Fine Arts in Fashion Design and Marketing. Mandy's classes consisted of merchandising, product development, and even fashion history. In order to gain hands on experience and knowledge of the fashion and retail industry she worked at a number of boutiques and stores during her time in college.
When she graduated college the economy was at an all time low. Mandy along with a friend of hers launched the website in November of 2010. They packed and shipped orders from her parent's basement while she continued to work a part time job. It was fun and it was new, but an adventure all the same. Even online, B.loved began to grow a local customer base that would come over and visit the basement to browse. Some of these same individuals shop inside the shop today. Mandy gained an appreciation for what all goes in to having and running a website, but all along hoped to one day open a store of her own. Her dad always said, "It's not IF you have a store but WHEN you have a store."
Ten years ago Mandy looked up the meaning of her name: someone who must be loved. That is what she wants every customer to feel when they make a purchase from B.loved.