SPOTLIGHT: Diana Gabriel

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Business: consignment boutique Change of A Dress in San Luis Obispo

785 Marsh Street Suite B, SLO, CA 93401

(805) 544-8288

slochangeofadress.com

Email: changeofadress2@yahoo.com

IG: @slochangeofadress

FB: Change of A Dress Resale and Consignment Boutique 

What is the story of your shop and what do you love most about running it?

Change of A Dress was started by Suzanna Clover and myself in the fall 2008. We were neighbors, were moms, and we knew each other because of our kids and husbands. We became closer through the ending of both of our marriages which happened around the same time. We had been staying home to care for our children. At the time I was also losing my jewelry business which I had successfully launched 10 years earlier, but due to the recession my sales plummeted.

What could two newly single moms do? How could we make money, be there for our kids, be near to home, and be fashion forward on small budgets? Change of A Dress was born. We opened the store with beautiful wardrobes we were no longer wearing. The store was an instant success with the community coming in with their items that were too nice to donate. The store was constantly growing. 

When Suzanne decided to retire in 2014, I took over the shop. I relocated to a space on Marsh Street in San Luis Obispo. With more floor space, I could bring in housewares, more clothing, and expand the clientele to all ages with all budgets. I love what the store has become over the years. We have clients that have been with us from the beginning. I have seen young ladies become women and have children of their own. I never tire of seeing the beautiful clothes, shoes, and accessories that women bring into the store to consign with us. It’s a great feeling to know we provide a service to the community to both our consigners and shoppers.

How do you use creativity in being a shop owner?

I have a background in merchandising and marketing, so I felt very comfortable in decorating the store myself. I love making montages of interesting objects, and plants with personal effects. I love layers and textures and light. I try to decorate the store like I do my own home, something that I look forward to everyday, and imagine how someone else might use it in their environment. Putting outfits together can be challenging at times, mostly because everything has to fit and women are all varieties of shapes and sizes. 

What is your personal connection with fashion, apparel, and accessories?

I was a jewelry designer in the community for over 10 years. I sold to many local boutiques in San Luis and across the country. I still make pieces for the shop with broken vintage jewelry and also have a line of pieces going to all my original stores in San Luis this coming summer.