As you all know, it’s Women’s’ History Month. So this month we wanted to delve into the lives of some stylish women who are making their mark in the Baton Rouge community. I sat down with Tia Whittington and Taylor Hunter. These two ladies have great brands that you should definitely be on the lookout for. I got a chance to sit down with them to learn more about their brands & style. Check it out!
Tia Whittington (@tiawhittington/@shophkyle)
First off, tell us a bit about yourself & your brand.
I am a 31 year old wife and mother of 2. My family is very important to me and as a result I decided to name my store and brand H.Kyle to commemorate the impact my daughter has had on my life. My brand is predicated on providing my customers with a comfortable shopping experience while fostering an atmosphere of confidence and freedom. I really try to connect and interact with my customers. H.Kyle is a perfect place to come to relax, talk, and shop (of course)!
What motivated you to start your own boutique?
Owning a boutique has always been a dream of my mother and myself. She was the most stylish person I knew, and of course that rubbed off on me. We always talked about opening a store after she retired. Unfortunately, she passed away before we were able to accomplish that. I started H Kyle Boutique in 2013 after the birth of my daughter. I happened to make a sweatshirt for myself for work (I was a teacher), wore it, and left school that day with $500 in orders. I thought sales would taper off after the holidays but they continued. I eventually moved over to the Etsy platform and after outgrowing that, started my own .com where I brought in boutique clothing. The goal was ultimately a brick + mortar location and after I found the perfect space, I decided to go ahead and take a chance.
Follow up question: How important do you feel like it is for women to make boss moves like owning their own businesses?
I think it is SUPER important for women to be empowered and to take risks. I’ve seen slogans saying, “the future is female.” I whole heartedly agree with that sentiment. There are opportunities for women to be more than what men think we should be. We can carve our way in this world. It is really inspiring to see so many women choosing to live out their dreams regardless of the challenges they face. It takes some bravery to venture out and open a business. Being my own boss is a challenge, but it is so rewarding.
How do you remain so stylish with being busy as a wife, mom, & business owner?
By waking up 30 minutes before my children, lol. I’m just kidding…kind of! Thankfully because I own my store, I do kind of shop off the racks there because I am my brand. I try to have something on from the store everyday. I take my time while going to markets to ensure that I am picking quality clothing that is on trend and flows along with my personal style. Also, I am a real deal shopper! I believe in a good bargain so I am always in TJ Maxx, Nordstrom Rack, Dillard’s, and Target searching for great pieces!
With it being Women’s History Month, what is something you would like to leave behind as a role model to your daughter & other women that may look up to you?
That’s a tough one. I hope I can leave a legacy that my daughter can look up to. I want to surround her with women who are not afraid to be who they are. I think the most important thing I can do for her is to encourage her to be who she wants to be and to live a life that she wants to live. Some rules were made to be broken, some doors were made to be kicked in, and some ceilings were meant to be busted. I don’t want her to ever forget that. My job is to live so that she can see the unlimited potential of woman’s heart and strength.
Taylor Hunter (@goldentimetay)
Tell me about yourself & your brand?
My name is Taylor S. Hunter and I am 24 years old. I’m a southern girl but my heart longs for the city (inspires my style a lot)
I am a freelance photographer and owner of the self-titled business (Taylor S. Hunter Photography). When I photograph, I am guided by the beauty that I find in my everyday surroundings. I like to turn the norm into something much bigger.
How does your style help to define you as a woman?
I’m a pretty simple and minimalistic woman so I think style says that. While I do enjoy trends, I always look for timeless pieces that I can wear with anything. My closet is full of blacks and neutrals, I love being able to mix and match them with anything. My life is often so busy and I need my wardrobe to be easy, yet stylish.
What do you think is the greatest thing about being a woman?
Wow, tough question. I think the greatest thing about being a woman is how we are such go-getters. Women have to multitask at everything. There is so much that we are responsible for and have to deal with on a daily. Whether its hair, beauty, self-care, laundry, work, school, kids, etc…. We get it done! We are so powerful and we often take that for granted.
How important is style for women?
It’s hard to speak for all women because so many have their own styles. I would say for myself, style is important for me as a sense of expression. I love contemporary and modern clothes that are sleek and comfy. It’s also important that the clothes I wear give me the room to work with ease. Being an entrepreneur, I am always on the go so I need something that is easy to get around in.
Where is your favorite place to shop?
My favorite place to shop is Target or shall I say Targét! From their causals to their business attire, their selection has such a great variety for women of all shapes and sizes! Their clothes tend to be more on the contemporary side which is right up my alley. They also have amazing accessories and shoes to spice up an outfit as well.
I want to thank both of these ladies for sharing their thoughts and great styles with us! Make sure you follow them to keep up with all the great things that they have coming. If you like this post, let us know so we can showcase more style in the Baton Rouge community!