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Bessemer City High Teacher Takes Boutique On The Road

Feature article from the Gaston Gazette

By Wade Tyler Millward

After a day of teaching entrepreneurship to Bessemer City High School seniors, Brooke Queen heads to her own business venture she’s decided to take a risk on.

Queen is only months into her mobile boutique business, FranciB, which uses her actual first name and middle initial.

She ran a brick-and-mortar store for about five years until 2010, but she now sells clothes from the LuLaRoe brand from a 1987 converted bread truck she bought off the online shopping website. Craigslist.

“I’m there today and gone tomorrow,” she said.

Unlike her store, the truck saves Queen money on overhead. She only needs to fill the truck with diesel about twice a month, she said.

Instead of taking a chance that people will come to a store or to her house, where she previously sold clothes, she drives to the customers.

She parks her truck outside businesses that request her presence to add options for customers and draw in onlookers wondering about her truck. She also gets booked for concerts and parties, hooking up a generator and letting her customers, mostly women, peruse.

Queen will only go to parties with a potential for at least 15 customers, she said. She hopes to get good business when Belmont starts up its summer concert series Friday Night Live.

Queen’s fiance, Greg Crisp, drives the truck and plays cornhole while Queen works with customers. He helped redesign the FranciB truck and helped her decide to take a chance on a new business, Queen said.

“I wouldn’t have take that leap of faith without him,” Queen said.

Their dedication to FranciB, run in the evenings and on the weekends when they are not working, meant pushing their planned wedding date from November to October 2017.

Now, she’s building a presence on social media so customers can follow her travels around the county. She hosts auctions on the truck where people bid on leggings and the proceeds go to charities, including one run by Bessemer City students to buy school supplies for children in need.

Her own two children, ages 12 and 8, have caught the fever for seeing the business succeed. They help Queen load the truck and they take plenty of photos to help win fans online.

“The hardest thing is time management,” she said. “We want to pay attention to the business and work our other careers. We get better and better at managing our time and adding in quality time with the kids.”

SOURCE: http://www.gastongazette.com/news/20161126/bessemer-city-high-teacher-takes-boutique-on-road