Today we’d like to introduce you to Julie McGonagle.
Julie, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
Chic Streets was a vision of mine for many years while working in media for The Boston Globe. After completing graduate school at Emerson College, I took a leave of absence from my job to hit bigger dreams in Los Angeles. After snagging work experience with media moguls like the STYLE network – E! Entertainment, and MTV, I was determined to make my vision a reality.
In the Spring of 2000, I launched chicstreets.com, an online boutique shop geared to elevate style to Bostonian women. I would travel and speak at many of the trade shows I was attending and noticed at that time, Boston did not have the niche boutiques that were in the big cities. After some press with JLO and US Weekly, we grew larger than expected and began with many local pop-ups and styling services. Currently, we have a great clientele in the North Shore area, particularly Swampscott and Marblehead.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It’s been a journey of real life experience no textbook could ever teach. There has and always will be moments of highs and lows. It is not always glamorous, but as the person in charge you wear many hats and that can be overwhelming. My advice to a young woman starting her journey is not work somewhere that does not fulfill you in some capacity. Once you find your passion, it will propel you to be best you can and the drive will come naturally.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Chic Streets – what should we know?
I am most proud of clients personally telling me how good they feel when they shop with us and the number of compliments they receive. This never gets old for me and reassures me I am right where I should be. As the owner of Chic Streets, I travel frequently to stay on point with trends in the fashion industry. I specialize in buying, merchandising and styling clients. Often, I will work with styling women who shop at Chic Streets for special occasions and/or vacations. Some key pieces will come from the boutique and others we hand select from other stores to have complete a look. I love to take the grunt off of a client who may not love to shop and make it pleasant.
Finding a mentor and building a network are often cited in studies as a major factor impacting one’s success. Do you have any advice or lessons to share regarding finding a mentor or networking in general?
If you run into anyone you admire even if they are in a different business, talk to them and learn. I still do that today. Reach out to people you admire and ask if they’d ever need help. Use social media to your advantage and immerse yourself with knowledge on who the trailblazers are in your industry.
- Website: Chicstreets.com
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @chicstreets
- Facebook: Facebook/Chic Streets
Julie McGonagle, Melanie Auld, Vintage Havana