ELIZABETH ALLEN - One, Two & #ThreeAllen
Elizabeth Allen, owner of the women's luxury boutique, e.Allen is a Middle Tennessee local. She opened her first location in Murfreesboro, TN in 2008. Nine years later Elizabeth's brand has expanded further across Tennessee into two additional locations. You can now shop e.Allen Boutique in Nashville, TN (The Gulch), and in Franklin, TN - the most recent addition! (#ThreeAllen).
Although her educational background is in science (She majored in biology and minored in chemistry), her raw enthusiasm and passion for style led her to opening her business.
"IT'S cliche, but true...Fashion is my passion. After children, I felt like I had lost a piece of myself. As silly as it seems, when I would get up and simply get dressed, I had more confidence. I knew other women had to feel the same way."
First and foremost, Elizabeth is a mother to her three precious children so her initial thoughts on the decision to open her business were a bit scary, but there was something that kept telling her to go for it. She thought,
"Ahhhh!! What am I doing?!?!? We had children ages 5, 2 and 2 months old! I had no idea what I was doing, other than I had a bigger power telling me to go out there, create, believe and hold on for the ride!!"
e.Allen Boutique is built on the foundation of quality vs. quantity. The items you will find in-store are functional and classic, with a touch of a few trendy and "of the moment" pieces. Personally, Elizabeth enjoys a high quality basic, a good jacket, sharp accessories and a fun print.
"I am drawn to versatile, timeless pieces. I inject trends into our collections as well but I MAKE SURE THAT these pieces don't break the bank. My hope is that when you get HOME, OPEN and get your pieces out of the bag, THAT they feel special and you wear them with pride over and over again."
With the arrival of spring and heading into the summer months, Elizabeth shares some shopping advice along with her recommendations of pieces to add to your warm weather wardrobe. So far, for Spring 2017, she is loving the throwback patches and patchwork pieces because of the authentic, vintage feel!
"I love the transitional seasons, Spring and Fall. As a consumer it's actually best to shop for your seasons when these months hit. it capitalizeS on your investments. Smart Spring purchases go into Summer; and same with Fall into Winter, by layering a few items."
"I always love a great pair of JBrand denim. Blank NYC jackets are a favorite, they hit on the top trends, and are well-made without the hefty price tag. Show Me Your Mumu is fun and flirty, with some great core basics and flowy staples. And I am LOVING French Connection's feminine, florals themes, that can be dressed up or down right now!"
Elizabeth's favorite part about owning her business is her team. She is inspired daily by the hard work each of her team members contributes. Although the team is spread out among the three locations, they get to know each other, become close friends and work passionately towards a common goal. e.Allen has seen great success over the last few years with the growth and the expansion of the brand from Murfreesboro into Nashville, and then into Franklin. She considers these store openings to be a few of many highlights on her journey with e.Allen.
"I think the opening of store #2 (Nashville) and store #3 (Franklin) have been some of the most memorable moments for me, and just the growth in general. I could just pinch myself, praying it's all true!"
As the brand continues to grow and evolve, Elizabeth's original vision of e.Allen Boutique has remained the same --
"The vision was always to embrace and uplift women, create confidence through clothing all while providing an experience you'd want to return to! From the beginning, it was always important to me establish a brand that could grow. I think IT has evolved and grown into something bigger than me. Something other young women have their hands in, believe in, and help to shape and mold."
With years of experience under her belt, and a growing and thriving brand, Elizabeth has learned valuable lessons from her time as a business owner as well as from conversations with dear friends. Opening a business is challenge in itself, and can be even more challenging when you have a family to take care of as well. As women, our natural inclination is to pour heavily into and care deeply for our babies - our biological babies and our business babies. Over the years of owning e.Allen, Elizabeth has learned to balance the two.
"As a woman, you want to nurture and grow your business. It took me several years to figure out how and when to stop working and stop thinking about work. I had to learn to be present and content when at work and when at home."
"In the beginning, I was sharing moments of heartache and discontent (which at the time felt like the end of the world!) with a dear friend of mine, who is more like a big sister than a friend; and she said to me "One day, these things will lose their shock factor and you will be able to pick up and move on quickly." She wasn't speaking of becoming emotionally detached. She was telling me business is business. It's not always personal, and you can't control what others do! This has always stuck with me, through so many aspects of e.Allen."
Elizabeth offers her advice to anyone considering starting a business of her their own --
"Find a mentor, find many mentors! Find people who directly align with what you believe in, what you want to do, and see if they will invest their time into you. And as always, do what you love... and you aren't working!"
Looking towards the future, her plan is to have less projects. Her goal for 2017 is to sit back and fine tune a few things before planning for the next new beginning.
"I had no idea e.ALLEN would be what it is today, but that's what happens when you have an amazing group of people who look forward and don't turn back. e.Allen is saturated with girl bosses, and for that reason alone...the sky is the limit!"
You can shop the e.Allen collection using the the link below, and follow e.Allen on Instagram by clicking here.
All looks styled by Elizabeth Allen. | All photos by Ashley Wilson.