Interview with Emily Lipman

What has been the most difficult part of starting your own business?  Have you had to face any obstacles?  

“Starting a business takes guts and a lot of money, but keeping that business takes dedication, determination & success. Of course, I have had obstacle; everyone does.  My major was sports management in college. So, opening a boutique was something I learned really quickly but I have passion for it. This is why I have had success with buying and understanding that side of the business.  I definitely messed up a few things, but I learn best from my mistakes.”

Have you had to make sacrifices in order to follow your dreams? How so?

“I sacrifice time with my family and friends.  When you open a business you have employees. However, they will never care about the business like you do.  If they don’t show up- guess who needs to be there- YOU.  It has been very difficult but I am changing my business to online only, which is, unfortunately, the way of the world” (jean bandits).

Where did your initial finances come from to start Raw Denim?

“My family and part of my savings.”

Do you have a partner in the business with you?

“I did when I started and I bought her out- now that is a life changer and learning experience right there.  I highly recommend not opening a business with a friend.”

Did you graduate from college?

“Yes, Lynn University.”

When did you realize you wanted to be an entrepreneur? Was this a particular moment or idea over time?

“I never thought about it as “being an entrepreneur”. I just realized life is too short to do something you don’t want to do.  I had a few friends pass away in the Haiti earthquake at Hotel Montana and they were there to help others and I was sitting behind a desk answering phone calls I didn’t want to answer.  I was at a breaking point- I was so unhappy. So, I knew I had to talk to my family, quit my job and start Raw Denim Boutique.

At what age did you have this idea? How long did it take for you to finally start up?

“I was 25 when I opened, Nov 2010.  I quit my job April 2010 and started researching immediately so it took me 7 months to build out and open which is VERY quick- I was lucky.”

Interview by Natalie Scott, SMU Student, Advertising 



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