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Fashion Advice from Elaine Turner

Heather Byrd chats with fashion designer and style maven, Elaine Turner

Written By:  Heather Byrd

Photographers:  

Elaine Turner is a fashion force to be reckoned with. Her self-titled designer brand of accessories and footwear is rapidly growing with a thriving online business and new retail stores opening across the country, the latest of which is right here in Nashville in The Mall at Green Hills. I caught up with the designer to find out what inspires her and how she utilized her entrepreneurial skills to build an empire.

HB: Do you have any advice for young entrepreneurs getting started in the fashion industry?

ET: I would say that the biggest thing is that they have to be passionate about what they do and I feel like in fashion you really have to kind of design with a purpose. You can’t just be creative for creative’s sake. You really have to approach it with a business point of view and come up with what your angle is and find the void in the market and then create a product that fills that void. I just think that there is so much talent out there and so much creativity but at the end of the day, you have to create a product that a consumer will want and need.

Obviously, everybody has to be profitable otherwise you can’t stay in business. But I also think you have to love it and give it a purpose and have a business approach to doing it and most of all you have to have perseverance. You have to believe in yourself and you can’t give up too easily. If you are going to be a designer, you have to be open minded, keep evolving and keep listening to your customer. The biggest thing I do every day is listen to my customer because it helps me learn to grow. You can’t get stuck and a big part of this business is listening and growing with your customer.

Read the full interview with Elaine on Heather's blog, Byrd's Eye View at heatherebyrd.com.

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