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Laura

Blue Betties Boutique

Chicago, IL

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Personal Story

Hi, my name is Laura and I am a self-employed manager and sole proprietor of Blue Betties Boutique in Pilsen. I was born 1973 in Chicago and raised on the border of Pilsen & Little Village neighborhoods till the age of 16. I studied Fashion and Merchandising at the International Academy of Merchandising & Design (former name), where I earned my B.A. in Fine Arts at the age of 23. I was officially a Fashion Designer of apparel, jewelry and accessories.
In October of 2009, at the age of 37, I moved back to the city from the west suburbs with plans of opening my own business. I had always wanted to open a place where people are welcomed like family and feel special by the time they leave. My belief is that customers should feel confident and special with each and every design and art piece they wear. Also, I wanted a place were local artists could feature their talents. Having been an instructor at various locations teaching how to create jewelry designs, I decided, “Why not have my own place with my own hours to share my love of art and design?!”
With a few dollars saved and great determination, I moved to Pilsen where I could immerse myself in my culture and embrace all the art, music, and a variety of businesses and restaurants Pilsen has to offer. Pilsen has developed and its community is growing more multi-cultural with time, but it has never lost its heart.
I am very proud of my Mexican heritage and all that it has offered me as inspiration through the years, from my family and upbringing to the cultural history that we can see and celebrate with the various community festivals throughout the year. The music, arts, foods, colors, fashions, as well as the community’s openness to multi-cultural diversity invites everyone. It's amazing!

Business Description

Blue Betties Boutique designs custom jewelry, clothing and home decor. I also feature local artisans and their art work. I decided to start my business from home in June 2009 and this year I decided to open a boutique in the Pilsen community because I grew up around this community and I have seen so many amazing artists and their work. They have inspired me to showcase my designs and I want to share my talent with others through workshops such as sewing and jewelry classes. My biggest challenge is having enough money to fill orders and to hire someone to help out. My customers are from all walks of life and age group. I believe in teaching all age groups and providing them unique items. If I don't have something you are looking for, then let's design it! That is what makes my boutique different. My goals for my company are to grow a bigger following, open a second location, and to grow an online customer base as well. I am very proud to see Blue Betties go from a spare bedroom office to having a store front!

What is the purpose of this loan?

I am planning on using the loan to buy more supplies such as beads, fabrics, bags and boxes. I need to buy supplies to fill some orders that my customers have placed with me. By getting this loan I will be able to fill the orders on time and my customers will be more loyal to my boutique and to me. This will in turn ensure return customers and also get me more customers through word of mouth because of excellent customer service. I'm hoping to use this loan to make my company grow by adding some workshops such as jewelry and sewing classes. By being able to add such workshops, it will open my boutique to more than just the customer who is looking for a gift. I also want to use the money for advertising so I can expand my audience. I want to say thank you for your time and I really appreciate all the love and support!

Laura's loan is endorsed by Eighteenth Street Development Corporation. The information below explains why her trustee thinks Laura is a great candidate for a Kiva Zip loan.
How long have you known this person?

1 year - 3 years

Tell us about your relationship with this borrower.

I've known Laura for a while now and I've seen her go through some tough times, but she has managed to move forward and open a business.

Tell us about this borrower's personality and character, and why you are endorsing him or her for a Kiva Zip loan.

Laura has a wonderful personality and character, she's always positive and friendly. I'm endorsing Laura because she is a caring person that needs a helping hand to take her business to the next level.

Tell us about this borrower's business, and why you believe a Kiva Zip loan will contribute to his or her success.

Laura has a unique boutique that includes original pieces of work by local artists, as well as her own handmade jewelry. I believe a Kiva Zip loan will contribute to her success because she just needs a little financial push to complete her boutique and make it grow.

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Profile
Chicago, IL
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PAYING BACK

A loan of $5,000 helps me to buy more supplies such as beads, fabric, bags, boxes, as well as advertising for my boutique.

Disbursed Jul 3, 2013
Repayment Term:
24 monthly payments
Grace Period:
N/A
Listed:
Apr 5, 2013
Disbursed:
Jul 3, 2013
Paying Back:
Jul 4, 2013

About Blue Betties Boutique

Industry:
Arts / Crafts
Years in Operation:
1 year - 3 years
Follow:
Facebook Twitter
Badges:
Badge_connectedness_gold_small

What are Borrower Badges?

Borrower Badges are a system designed to recognize and reward borrowers’ engagement with the Kiva Zip website.

There are two types of badges that are tiered like medals: Gold, Silver and Bronze.

  1. 'Repayment badges' are awarded for the on-time repayment of loans.
  2. 'Connectedness badges' are awarded for engagement with the Kiva Zip website.

This loan is endorsed by

Trustee Type:
Non-profit Economic Development
Location:
Chicago, IL
Badges:
None
On Zip Since:
Apr 5, 2013
(12 months)
Loans Endorsed:
2
Total Value:
$10,000
Fundraising/Raised:
0
Paying on Time:
Not enough data
Paying Back Late:
Not enough data
Repaid in Full:
0
Defaulted:
0
Repayment Rate:
Not enough data
Why are you endorsing Laura?

Laura has a wonderful personality and character, she's always positive and friendly. I'm endorsing Laura because she is a caring person that needs a helping hand to take her business to the next level.

What are Trustee Badges?

Trustee Badges are a system designed to recognize and reward trustees’ engagement with the Kiva Zip website.

There are two types of badges that are tiered like medals: Gold, Silver and Bronze.

  1. 'Repayment badges' are awarded for the on-time repayment of loans.
  2. 'Connectedness badges' are awarded for engagement with the Kiva Zip website.
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