When Shannon McComb opened Lucky Finds Boutique, a trendy designer and brand name consignment shop, in 2011 in Rockville Centre, NY, she was prepared to cater to other women who were fashion starved following the recession. She was not prepared to become a local icon. We got the scoop on how she runs her biz to keep ‘em coming back for more…
Shannon: Our customer loves shopping at Lucky Finds because our merchandise is of quality, priced right, and designer. We have been told that the store has become an addiction, which as a business owner is very rewarding to hear!
R: What were you doing before you opened Lucky Finds?
S: I studied fashion buying and merchandising at Nassau Community College, and then went on to work for Steve Madden shoes. I held many titles there. I started off as a store manager. My last title was the training and development director for the stores. I was also a district manager and regional manager.
R: How did you decide to open a high-end consignment shop?
S: Because of the recession. My position was eliminated at Steve Madden after 13 years, so I decided to put my fate into my own hands. I’ve always had a love for consignment. As a little girl I shopped consignment and I was a consignee, so it seemed like the perfect fit for my own business.
S: My suggestion: absolutely. If I didn’t have a retail background it would be very difficult. It is very challenging but very rewarding. It’s very detailed. You need to have the retail experience to understand what’s hot, what’s not, what’s trending, how to merchandise, what to take in, what not to take in and you also need the operational background as well. It’s very different from regular retail. Everyone always says to me, “what a great idea,” and it is a great idea. However, it’s a lot of work because you have x amount of consignees that you have to keep track of and protect their merchandise, and of course you have to honor your agreement. I make sure I hold myself with very high integrity. If someone drops off 20 pieces, I am either selling them or they are getting them back. Period.
R: What makes your business concept unique?
S: Lucky finds is a designer brand name consignment boutique where we take merchandise from Michael Kors all the way up to Chanel. We are very trendy, and merchandise is ever changing; new incoming merchandise is placed on the sales floor everyday. All the merchandise is in pristine “like new” condition. We are very selective and we try to cater to our customers when consignees come in with their merchandise. We make sure that we have the right product for them. Our merchandise is 50%-75% less than regular retail, so our pricing offers our customer a quality, investment kind of piece at a fraction of the cost. There is a thrill of the hunt to find a great piece here that no one else has. Everything is one of a kind, all little treasures. That’s why we call it “Lucky Finds!”
R: What are some of your favorite pieces in the store right now?
S: We have an amazing Louis Vuitton handbag going for $349…a brand new Kate Spade handbag (with the tags still on it!) for $219…and some really cool Fendi wedges which we’re selling for $229. AKA, a steal.
S: The value of the product! You can get a Louis Vuitton bag for half the price or less. The products are so unique, you most likely will never walk into an event wearing something the same as someone else. As a business owner I have to contain myself from purchasing everything!
R: What are some rules to consider when shopping consignment?
S: Everything is final sale. Because of the nature of the business, these are all pre-loved items and they are not returnable. As a consignee, all merchandise needs to be brought in on hangers and truly has to be in pristine, new, laundered condition for us to accept it.
R: Sounds like you’ve landed your dream gig! What’s your advice for someone struggling to find a job in this economy?
S: Follow your passion. If you do what you love, you won’t work a day in your life. And if you do what you love, you will be successful at it.