We were lucky to catch up with Lauren Tieru recently and have shared our conversation below.
Hi Lauren , really happy you were able to join us today and we’re looking forward to sharing your story and insights with our readers. Let’s start with the heart of it all – purpose. How did you find your purpose?
I originally opened a boutique to curate home decor pieces and gifts that I personally liked and wanted to sell to others. As we began to meet customers and locals, we found a real lack of local products being sold in boutiques. We began by purchasing small amounts from local makers and vendors and gradually became an all local storefront, allowing vendors to rent space and sell in our store. Customers took to this and appreciated the local inventory and enjoyed shopping these products.
While we are currently looking for a new storefront to continue this passion of shopping locally, we still curate our original decor pieces and focus on shopping small and supporting local.
Thanks, so before we move on maybe you can share a bit more about yourself?
After moving quite a bit as a kid and young adult, I have been in Las Vegas for the last 16 years and it feels like the best place to say “where I’m from.” In these 16 years, I feel like I have lived multiple lives in this city. I started school originally for interior design, then transitioned into event planning and received a certification in Wedding Planning from UNLV. I then began working for a catering company where I took over the reins of overseeing all events for a wide range of clients. After years of catering events, I went on to work with a Destination Marketing Company where we planned and executed corporate events geared more towards conventions and tourists of our city. Through this career I had experiences that you only hear about and hope to achieve, although full of stress and high expectations.
Having children and with a desire to be a more active participant in their activities and to “work” less, I wanted to open a boutique where I could again focus on interior design and home goods, and with an event space to still do what I loved, but on a much smaller scale. In January of 2020, I gave notice to my employer of a decade long career, found out we were having a (Surprise!) third child in February, and then in March the world shut down from Covid. But, determined and stubborn, I signed a lease for a boutique space that just felt meant to be. Two weeks after our third child was born, we opened the doors to Paige & Rye (the middle names of our first two children), and started booking for our small event space, The Grey Room (our third child’s middle name). During our first year of being open (in a pandemic), we booked over 70 events and met amazing, loyal shoppers in our boutique. Our second year of business allowed us to expand to the unit next door and double the amount of space for events. Now in our third year as a company, we have transitioned into becoming completely local and carrying makers and businesses from all over Las Vegas and beyond, something this city was lacking. We recently hosted a pop-up location at Downtown Summerlin, and our shop has grown to three times the size it was when we first opened. I cannot wait to see what is next for us.
I guess the joke’s on me: when I left my career, I imagined I would have more time and less work. Now, I work 24/7 and for (A LOT) less pay. But the rewards of creating something special and having my family be a part of this growth means more to me than anything I could ever do in a corporate environment. I enjoy spending time with our team at the store, hosting events, and spending time with friends and family. I always say I need to slow down, but it will never happen, I have too many ideas and goals to achieve.
There is so much advice out there about all the different skills and qualities folks need to develop in order to succeed in today’s highly competitive environment and often it can feel overwhelming. So, if we had to break it down to just the three that matter most, which three skills or qualities would you focus on?
Certainly having a sales background has helped with being in-store and continuing to book business and close sales. . Learning how to speak with customers, ensure sure they are being taken care of and meeting their needs. Follow up is one of the most important parts of any business.
I learn something new everyday! Never stop learning, studying, reading- always look for what’s next and how you may improve your skills even more.
How would you spend the next decade if you somehow knew that it was your last?
During the Pandemic, online shopping became the way of the world. Now, we find that in-store shopping has become much more the desire. We currently struggle with online shopping and how to get customers to shop on our website instead on only storefront with the the same experience. Of course, also a struggle to compete with large, discounted websites for shopping.