All posts tagged: participants

Raphaella Teschner Finds Her Calling In Women’s Plus-Size Clothing Store

New store on Main Street would be a first in Gloucester

Raphaella Teschner has found her calling – helping women who wear plus-size clothing feel good about themselves and think – KNOW – the are beautiful.

Teschner’s business concept, the Beautiful Plus Boutique, will sell exclusively plus-size women’s clothing and fashion accessories on Main Street in the Gloucester Village. She also plans on offering a specialized, personal shopping experience to include in-store alterations.

“I want to help women find their own beauty and extend that to the outside,” Teschner said. “Even jeans and a t-shirt can look good. Having women feel good about themselves is my goal. When you feel beautiful you really do look beautiful because that aura extends around you.”

Teschner is specifically vying to be one of three prospective business owners selected from a pool of local entrepreneurs to receive a combined value of $95,000 in goods, services and start-up capital to launch a business on Main Street (the three winners will share the total value of the prize package). The Launch Gloucester program is part of Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s Virginia Community Business Launch initiative and is locally overseen by Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust and Gloucester Main Street Association.

As a plus-size woman herself, Teschner said she, too, has had trouble finding clothes that are fashionable, high quality and fit well.

“Just finding clothing that I could go work in and not look like my grandmother and that fit me well was very difficult,” Teschner said. “It really became a passion of mine (to create a store where) people could come and find something that they were confident in and makes them feel beautiful.”

Teschner envisions her store helping empower plus-size women on a deeper level. When she wears clothes she feels good about, it carries over to her identity, she said.

“I really want to help the women that walk into my store appreciate their own beauty and be more self-confident themselves. I’ve struggled with self-confidence. But now I feel I have more self-confidence than I have in a long time.”

Teschner’s mother, Yolanda Teschner, has a women’s clothing store on Main Street – Yolanda’s. Although it’s not always been full-time, Raphaella Teschner has worked for her mother doing the books and other “behind the scenes” duties that she said will help her open her own store and make it successful.

 

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True Found Wellness & Heart Felt Touch ‘Heal From The Inside Out’

Jill Reece and Ginger Platsis like to say they touch lives from the inside out. Now they would like to touch more lives and attract new clients.

Reece, owner of True Found Wellness, and Platsis, owner of Heart Felt Touch, share office space in the DeHardit House off of Main Street. Reece’s True Found Wellness is a holistic wellness service that explores the client’s history, symptoms and health concerns to generate recommendations customized to meet their wellness goals.

With Heart Felt Touch, Platsis is a massage therapist, educator of infant massage, medical massage practitioner and compassionate touch practitioner. Their friendship dates back two years and they linked their businesses together in August 2014.

Reece and Platsis are hoping to expand their business and vying to be one of three prospective business owners selected from a pool of local entrepreneurs who will share a combined value of $95,000 in goods, services and start-up capital to launch a business on Main Street. The Launch Gloucester program is part of Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s Virginia Community Business Launch initiative and is locally overseen by Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust and Gloucester Main Street Association.

Platsis said she and Reece have learned a lot in the short amount of time they have been involved in the Launch Gloucester program and its eight weeks of classes.

Platsis “jumped into” owning Heart Felt Touch after working as a massage therapist at the Riverside Walter Reed Hospital Wellness Center.

“I’ve got clients, I’m renting a room, I’ll make it happen,” Platsis said of her thinking before opening her own business. “We’re learning how to prepare beforehand to make it successful. The empowering thing was really learning how to do it successfully. We’re learning how to build a business in eight weeks.”

Reece came from a background in the health industry, specifically in nursing management. “I’ve always been making someone else’s dream come true with their money,” she said. “But I want to make my dream come true and impact the community.”

Platsis said she heard about the Launch Gloucester program through the Gloucester Main Street Association when she wanted to join the organization.

“Just the support we have felt through Launch Gloucester has been huge,” Reece said.

“We don’t feel we’re doing this alone,” Platsis said. “Their plan is to create success. It’s nice to have that net underneath us.”

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Nina Watkins Hopes To Open A Consignment Boutique On Main Street

Twice As Nice Consignment Boutique would complement downtown stores.

Nina Watkins thinks it’s perfect timing for a women’s and children’s clothing consignment boutique on Main Street.

Watkins is vying to be one of three prospective business owners selected from a pool of local entrepreneurs to share a combined value of $95,000 in goods, services and start-up capital to launch a business on Main Street. The Launch Gloucester program is part of Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s Virginia Community Business Launch initiative and is locally overseen by Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust and Gloucester Main Street Association.

A resident of Gloucester since 1990, Watkins is in her eighth year of owning Twice As Nice Consignment Boutique. “Owning my own business gives me more flexibility with my family,” Watkins said. “And it’s doing something I love and believe in.”

Watkins wants to open a women’s and children’s clothing consignment boutique on Main Street. She lives just minutes from Main Street and believes the time is right in Gloucester.

“I don’t need to be in Williamsburg as much and it’s a better time for me to be in Gloucester,” Watkins said. “I see Main Street being fixed up and I see more people opening businesses that I go to myself. I believe in shopping local and what’s better than running a business in a community you live in?”

Her store in Williamsburg has over 2,000 consignors and draws customers from Richmond, Deltaville, Middlesex, White Stone and elsewhere.

“I actually have consignors that have businesses on Main Street,” Watkins said.

She envisions bringing over some of the nicer pieces that people may have not been able to get access to in Gloucester. These include her high-end items typically found in stores such as Saks and Neiman-Marcus. Watkins also said the store will bring shoppers to Gloucester, who will visit, shop and dine.

Twice As Nice Consignment Boutique will complement stores already on Main Street, Watkins said. Her customers save money on clothes and will be inclined to shop at other clothing stores on Main Street, while her consigners will be earning money.

“The women who consign with us will be coming in and getting a check,” Watkins said. “Sun Trust is right there and they’re going to have cash in their pocket. They’re going to want to shop right on the street. I really feel it’s a win-win business in this area. You’re bringing in things for people that they always have wanted to have but they didn’t want to spend money on.”

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