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  • Writer's pictureRandy Reid

Minding Your Business: Up the Creek Ladies Consignment Boutique

Name of Business: Up the Creek Ladies Consignment Boutique

Address: 163 Main St., Owego, NY 13827

# Years in Business: Starting our 8th year!

Owner/Owners: Tammi Seeley and mom Jackie Carlson

Why did you start your business? I have always wanted to own my own business! I moved back to upstate NY to open up a Coldwater Creek store in Vestal and seven years later when the company folded I was left with a feeling of being “Up the Creek”. I decided to enroll in the EAP (Entrepreneurial Assistance Program) program at SUNY Broome and, after completing that, I opened my store on February 8, 2015. At the time consignment stores were increasing across the country by 39%. The village of Owego, where my store is located, consists of fabulous individual small businesses and restaurants. Everyone helps each other here! I wanted my business to also “give back” so we have many fundraising events and sell items to help local charities.

Tell me about your business: I decided that I wanted my store to be more than just consignment. I wanted a true boutique with not only clothes, shoes, and handbags. We have over 25 local crafts people and vendors here. We also order new easy-wear easy-care type clothes. We have antiques, collectibles, small furniture, and jewelry, both vintage and new. We have gift items, too, especially during the holidays.

Who are your customers? My customer base consists mostly of women aged mid 30’s and up, but we do see college-aged ladies coming in for vintage and trendy items.

What did you do differently during the pandemic that kept your business alive? I didn’t stay home. I came to work every day to try to generate sales. I did Facebook videos and took orders over the phone. I delivered and did curbside pick-up. As soon as my consignment software company Traxia let me know that they were partnering with Shopify, I jumped at the chance to have an online store and we launched it in February 2021. Here is the link to get you to that site.

Other Important Information: Our goal for 2022 is to order in new clothes made in the USA for our boutique. We are currently testing two different lines of clothing.

Interested in having a business featured in Southern Tier Life's "Minding Your Business"? Email for information.


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