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Meet Jodie Schmidt of Arabella Boutique in Breckenridge

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jodie Schmidt.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Jodie. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
Sometimes new adventures come at inconvenient times but just cannot be passed up. New opportunities… new challenges… new stress – all good but certainly overwhelming at times. That is when the conversation of the future of Arabella Boutique began, January 2015.

I began working at this cute little boutique in Breckenridge, Colorado, back in the Fall of 2011. The previous owner, Susan Manis, took me under her wing and it’s like she knew deep down that she was grooming me to someday take over. The time had come and she had mentioned to me that she was just going to close the doors. That is when the conversation sparked between my brother and sister-in-law who were out visiting from Wisconsin. I mentioned to them that Susan was going to be closing up shop and the next thing I know they are asking me to ask her if she would sell it. After much discussion, deliberation, and prayer, we decided to jump on the opportunity to take over this fun boutique in the heart of a beautiful ski town that we love and I get to call home.

October 2015 is when the Schmidt’s officially took over as the new owners of Arabella Boutique. The business is managed and operated by myself. My brother is my ‘behind the scenes’ support with the shop. When my sister in law isn’t busy in her full-time position as a Family Practice Dr., she will come to markets with me to help buy for the store. Through the years, we have had so many other family members step up to help support our little boutique. This business truly is family owned and operated.

The past four years have been a whirlwind, we have had some bumps along the road but many more fun experiences and stories along the way. We have so many goals for this little store and are grateful for the relationships that have started and those that have grown stronger.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
We had an amazing first year of business when we took the store over in October 2015. Unfortunately, that hasn’t necessarily been the case year over year. Retail is a tough business. We have really started to see a shift in the retail market just in general. Being able to ask for help and gain more knowledge from my open-to-buy planner has really helped me in better preparing for the future.

Since taking the store over, I started to experience more stress and anxiety. The added pressures of wanting to have this business be successful and to have your family involved, well… I just don’t want to let them down. That has been my biggest challenge in this Boutique Boss world. Learning to build my confidence and trust my judgement in this journey. Seeking out new avenues of knowledge to gain in improving not just my business but for myself as well. Being able to take control of my anxiety with the help of a counselor as well as a supportive partner and of course my family. I know they are here to help when I ask for it and to know this is a huge comfort.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
Located in the heart of Breckenridge, Colorado, Family-Owned Arabella Boutique offers a blend of fashion-forward thinking and Rocky Mountain Soul.

Arabella means ‘prayerful servant’. We believe in the power of prayer. We love the verse found in Proverbs 31:25… “She is clothed in strength and dignity and laughs without fear of the future.” This is our mission and vision for the store. While Arabella carries beautiful clothing, it is so much more than a quality clothing store. In a world where women face pressures on all sides, we at Arabella desire to help you learn to exude strength and dignity while laughing at the days to come because you know who you are and what you were made for. We want to help you not only choose the perfect outfit but also encourage you to pursue your heart’s dreams. Make the transition from fitting in, to standing out in your very own Arabella Style.

What were you like growing up?
Born and raised in Wisconsin, I grew up across the street from a little ski hill known as Cascade Mountain. I have to credit this to how I ended up in Colorado. I graduated from Marquette University in 2005 and moved to Colorado that Fall.

I am the youngest of three older brothers. I wanted to do everything they did, especially being much older than me. I was a pretty active kid. My parents had me involved in many sports. Besides tennis and skiing, I was also involved in volleyball, basketball and softball. My mother also encouraged me when it came to music and started playing the violin when I was 3.

I am more of an outgoing, bubbly personality. I was friends with everyone and didn’t really want to be pegged into a particular ‘clique’ in school. My empathetic nature def characterized me as the friend and family member you can count on when in need. I wear my heart on my sleeve and I always try to be open-minded and put myself in other peoples’ shoes (I def get this from my father). I was a pretty easy-going kid and was always up for new adventures. I credit my entrepreneurial spirit to my father as he started his own business and grew it successfully before retiring a few years ago.

I am definitely the personality type that enjoys being my own boss. As far as interests go, well there is skiing seeing I’ve been doing it since I was three. I also enjoyed playing tennis competitively growing up and will still play from time to time when I can get to the court. Travel is another big interest of mine when I can get the time away from the store. Last but not least, I can’t forget my love of cats and the Green Bay Packers! Go Pack Go!

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