Victoria, Vancouver Island/Coast
In Business Since 2021
Victoria, Vancouver Island/Coast
Rise Consignment is focused on affordability, sustainability, and community. We want to harness the amazing sense of community in the Victoria area and create something new - a way for individuals and small businesses to come together and celebrate themselves through shopping, unique events, and collaborations. Rise is committed to giving back to the community, helping break fashion barriers, and contributing to both circular fashion and a circular economy!
Best Youth Entrepreneur
What motivated you to start your business and what is your vision for the future of the company?
Consignment has long been a passion of mine; I love the circular aspect of clothing being given a new life, and being able to support the local economy. I began shopping second-hand out of necessity from a very early age, due to financial struggles my family endured when I was a child. As I grew up, the choice to shop second hand became more of a passion than a necessity. The world creates 92 million tonnes of material waste per year, and research has shown that small businesses spend up to 63% of their revenue back into their local economy. For these reasons and many more, I choose to shop secondhand for the planet and local economy. As an adult, thrift and consignment stores have always been my first choice when shopping for clothes. Following this passion, I sought out positions in the consignment industry, and was hired as a sales associate at a consignment store in my hometown of Calgary, AB. I worked at this company for 5 years and progressed into an e-commerce and social media management role. I was able to learn so much more about sustainable fashion and what it takes to run a business. I was also able to connect with young entrepreneurs who were passionate about the same thing I was. It was a very inspiring experience, and it encouraged me to open my own consignment store. I moved to Victoria in 2021 and felt that the market for affordable consignment in the city was underserved. So, I decided to take the leap and open my own business, and that is how Rise Consignment came to be. My vision for the future of Rise Consignment is to be the premier destination in the Greater Victoria Area for trendy yet widely affordable consignment and local goods. I dream of opening a multi-use space capable of hosting shopping events and workshops with local artists to be able to support the community that has supported me so well. Additionally, I am looking forward to a time in my business where I am able to grow to hire multiple employees.
Why do you deserve to win the Best Youth Entrepreneur Award?
I started Rise Consignment when I was 25 years old and have successfully made it a year and a half without any outside financial backing. I am still the sole employee and am responsible for all business related tasks. This includes all administration and financial tasks such as tracking revenue, paying consignors out, marketing and social media, daily operations which include running the storefront 5 days a week, consignment intake and pricing, as well as all communications. Rise Consignment started as an online only store, and I was using my bedroom as the main location of the business. It was here that I stored inventory, had consignors drop off clothing, and I was also doing local pickups and delivery of clothing items, plus much more. With the generous support of consignors and customers, I quickly outgrew using my bedroom as the main location for the business, and within the first year I was able to open a collaborative storefront in Downtown Victoria with a few other local small businesses. Despite the hardships of launching a business without any sort of a business background, my passion for serving the community and helping create a circular economy has outweighed all of the difficulties of running this business and getting it off the ground. I do my very best to support the community by donating all unselected and expired items to Our Place Society which is a local homeless shelter and 1Up Single Parent Resource Centre. Both of these deserving organizations have free clothing rooms for those who need it. Additionally, we are putting money directly into the community's pocket as consignors receive 40% of the profits of the clothing items they consign. My main goal is to make sure that everyone can be comfortable with how they want to express themselves with their style, even on the tightest of budgets. Rise Consignment is a safe space for people of all genders, abilities, and socio-economic levels to come together and find quality additions to their wardrobe.
Why do you think you should win the Premier’s People’s Choice Award?
I would be honoured to win the Premier's People's Choice Award. I am incredibly passionate about my work and put my heart and soul into it every day. This award would contribute to my ability to grow Rise Consignment through hiring employees, re-creating an e-commerce site, and hosting sustainable fashion events without barriers. I can't wait to continue to build and support our community in new ways. I am committed to providing quality service and secondhand products while connecting through shared values with my consignors and customers. I hope that my voters see the passion I put into my business and want to join me on the journey of working towards a circular economy.