Let’s be real. It is an understatement to say shopping makes everybody feel like they're walking on a dream. We take the phrase “treat yo self” to the next level and end up reading $0.00 in a matter of seconds. It definitely takes some willpower to hold back on something we want, but wait... when we say want, we mean now. Unfortunately from where we are from, most of the brands and clothing we love come from stores nowhere near El Paso. Thankfully, we can always count on the chic and lovely J. Luxe Boutique to run to.
Every time we step foot through the door it brings excitement knowing we will be walking out the store feeling like Carrie Bradshaw. We never seem to stop talking about the vintage decor that compliment the endless selection of some of our favorite brand names (For Love and Lemons, Line & Dot, and Lovers and Friends to name a few). The atmosphere of the entire store makes the shopping experience that much better and we’re obsessed.
The best thing about J Luxe is that we had no idea a store could resemble someone’s persona so much until we met Jessica Escalante, the owner behind the idea of it all. We caught up with her over some Chipotle (If you follow us on Snapchat you'd know we couldn’t forget her must-have, green chile tabasco ) and she let us in on some of her past experiences, gave us some advice for all of us who are still on the journey to accomplish our dreams, and for others who are just interested in getting to know her ;)
Who are you? Introduce yourself to the Sun Eyed Girls readers, tell us about yourself.
"My name is Jessica and I own J. Luxe Boutique. Well, I am 32-years-old, I’m a law-school-dropout; I have been living this wonderful, creative life for five years since J. Luxe opened, and I’m getting married in December and I love you [Zoe]!"
Tell us ALL about J. Luxe Boutique! Where did it all start?
"It all started when I was very young, I took a family trip to Ruidoso and I just fell in love with the local boutiques because back then I think they were a little bit more...unique. Or I remember them that way. Maybe. I’ve become pickier now about boutiques, but I remember seeing this lady and she was organizing her store and it was suuuupeeer cute. I just loved how people would come in-and-out and chat with her and that was her work. I loved the idea of selling and finding unique products, sharing it with people, and it kinda being a local hangout spot for your customers and your brand. So, I just took that little thought with me forever. When I decided not to be a lawyer anymore, I then said, “let me give this little dream of mine a shot!”"
Where are you headed? Where do you see J. Luxe in 5 to 10 years?
"I just want it to really grow and remain the quality product that customers expect, ya know? Continue to meet everyone’s expectations plus astonish them a little bit. In reality, I’m probably in the hardest steps of a business [right now] because I’ve started it from the ground up, so it’s been really hard establishing it, getting it steady and I’m seeing the light at the end of tunnel. But, ultimately, I would love for this to be a legacy for my, hopefully, daughters. I think sometimes the second generation takes the business to a next level, so I would just love to see what the new, fresh minds bring it to the next level with social media and all that."
What makes J. Luxe different from any other local boutiques?
"Um, good question! You know, I think, you just get an all-around experience when you’re here as far as the visuals. You walk-in there’s really pretty lighting and furniture that’s kinda worn, and it creates kind of a really unique experience that people wouldn't expect this from El Paso. We also have a lot of fun brands that big California stores or big online retailers carry, and I feel like we bring brands that people would travel out of town to find and we’re able to bring them to El Paso. They’re not just mass produced pieces. It’s stuff that’s purchased with certain people in mind."
What would you tell aspiring entrepreneurs to avoid?
"Avoid making decisions based on people’s discouragement. When I was 12 or 13, my mom’s cousin asked me, 'what are you gonna do when you grow up?', and I told him I wanted to go into fashion. He told me that it was a stupid idea because fashion was never going to make me any money and I was never going to succeed at it. I really listened to him. I’m kicking myself in the ass now because I wish I would have just started merchandising, started fashion school right away. I probably would have been a lot more advanced now. Don’t listen to people when they discourage you. Follow your guts. If you love it you’re going to be good at it because you’re just going to put in the work even when it doesn’t feel like work. Don’t quit. When you start something be consistent. It’s not going to flourish over night, unless you’re a super, one-in-a-million. But don’t stop and don’t quit. Keep going. Put a lot of love and consistency into it."
Best advice for women who are trying to break the glass ceiling?
"My aunt always tells me: 'The squeaky wheel gets cleaned' ...or something like that. Always fight for your beliefs, dude. Raise hell, that’s the thing. You raise hell! If someone’s being unfair to you, someone’s being shitty, you see unfairness or someone is treating you unfairly? Make noise! Talk to city reps, talk to managers, talk to the persons! Email, call, text! Raise hell until you get fairness! That’s what I do. I’m a big pain in the ass when it comes to unfair treatment. ASK QUESTIONS! Be super annoying."
Coolest moment so far in your business life?
"Coolest moment so far in my business life? I have a lot of cool moments. I guess traveling? And I’ve made some of the best friends through J. Luxe, like you [Zoe]! There’s been a lot of cool moments like getting recognized and getting messages from people. I remember this one time a friend of mine was in class at UTEP and he said that these girls were on our online store, and he sent me a picture of it; little things like that. The fact that the store has become known by itself. No one really knows who’s behind it but everybody knows about it. But I still think there’s a lot cooler moments ahead."
Top 3 things you wish you knew in your 20’s
"That I wasn’t going to become a lawyer —ever. I would’ve not wasted so much time. Which I didn’t because I still learned a lot. How big social media was going to be. Mind you, I’m 32, so that was a long time ago. Not to care so much what people think because it really doesn’t matter."
Apart from being busy with your boutique, what is your favorite way to unwind
"Working out. I love yoga, but probably working out. I take out a lot of my aggression there! Cuddling with Brooklyn. Watching Real Housewives!! LOOOOVEEEE reality junk television because during that hour I’m lost! Watching Real Housewives, working out, and cuddling with my dogs. That’s it."
What are your current fave tracks to listen to when you’re working?
"I love Little Dragon! I think it’s super cute and fun. It’s my favorite. I also like Rhea. LOVE HER! Her stuff is super sexy and sultry. I like to listen to her a lot when I’m in a mellow mood. What else do I love to listen to?? Oh, I really like Solange! I feel like she’s super underrated and her music is SUPER fun. It reminds me of a little 70’s vibe with her ‘fro and her style."
Whenever you cuties get the chance, make sure to stop by and visit J. Luxe Boutique on the corner of Cincinnati and Staton across the street from Crave. Don't forget to always shop local; you are supporting the beautiful city of El Paso! <3
Until next time,