Canberra is missing a few things: nice weather, a beach, fun things to do...plus a few more brunch spots wouldn't go astray. But you know what? Sadly we can't control these things.
We also need a new haven for shoes. Good shoes. Ones that will last and that we can spend our entire pay check on, then eat staples for the rest of the week. Where art thou shoe Mecca Canberra ladies so deservedly need?
IT'S ON THE HORIZON. Like opening on Saturday the 22nd of October type of horizon. Our beautiful owner/manager/business mogul of Rebel Muse, Alicia, is opening a new shoe/accessory store called Peachy Keen and we need to tell you all about it right now.
It is very exciting news. It should really be front page of The Canberra Times type of news. But until that day, Yads our Editor, stole some (oh so precious) time from Alicia to chat about it because she couldn't wait.
Tell us about Peachy Keen. What type of store is it, what brands will it stock?
It’s a mixed brand shoe and accessory store. Majority of the selection will be shoes. Shoe styles will range from your lifestyle and sports brands like Superga, Birkenstock and New Balance to your more fashion brands like Senso, Jaggar and Mode Collective. Other shoes brands we will stock are; Siren, Alias Mae, Dept of Finery, Beau Coops. We will have bags, sunglasses, jewellery and all types of accessories from; Dylan Kain, The Wolf Gang, Sunday Somewhere, Pared, Elizabeth & James, F + H Jewellery, Krystle Knight, 66 the label and Amber Sceats.
Why did you decide to open Peachy Keen in Canberra? How will it work with Rebel Muse?
There really aren’t many mixed brand shoe shops in Canberra at all! Rebel Muse is such a small space and there are so many great shoe and accessory brands out there that aren’t yet represented in Canberra. We wanted to bring them to Canberra but didn’t have the space for them in Rebel Muse. A second store was always on the cards and I could see the gap in the market here for a shoe shop. When this space became available and was offered to me, it just made sense! Peachy Keen is also in the Ori Building on Lonsdale Street in Braddon. It is only three shops down from Rebel Muse. We are moving all the shoes and accessories out of Rebel Muse and into Peachy Keen and extending the range. It means that we are creating more of a one stop shopping destination for our customers. They know they can come out to the Ori building and find a complete outfit between the two stores and enjoy a range of other stores that are on offer around here.
Where did the name Peachy Keen come from? How did it come about?
To be honest I actually just like the saying. There’s a line in the move Grease where Rizzo says “peachy keen, jelly bean” and I’ve always just liked that line! Haha I think its cute, fun and playful, which is what we want Peachy Keen to be. Shoes and accessories should be fun and playful!
What can we expect Peachy Keen to look like?
Where do you get your inspiration from when buying for the fitout/interiors of your shops? Peachy Keen is opening in the space that is so well known and loved as Unit Concepts. We are very lucky that we are able to take over a space that has a nice existing fit out. We are only making a few small changes to make it our own brand. Unlike Rebel Muse that is very monochromatic, Peachy Keen is going to be a bit more bright, colourful and vibrant, again playing on the idea that we want it to be fun and playful. We are putting in a lot of soft blush pink accents from soft furnishings and combining them with bright, vibrant green from lots of plants and greenery. We are also super excited to be getting in a big custom artwork from the talented Jess Cochrane, which will also be available for sale in store. I get my inspo from stalking through Instagram and Pinterest and I love interior magazines!
How will Peachy Keen be different from other shoes store?
Peachy Keen will differ from other shoe shops because of the fun, colourful vibe and awesome and friendly customer service that our customers have come to know and love from Rebel Muse. We will also have a bigger range of accessories than what you would find in most shoe shops. We have developed such a beautiful community feel at Rebel Muse and we know so many of our customers on a first name basis, who often sometimes come in more for a chat than anything else. We want to bring this same community feel and vibe to Peachy Keen, which is another way that it will be an extension to Rebel Muse.
What's been the most challenging part of your job?
The most challenging is probably juggling all the different roles I have. I’m a sales assistant, the store manager, the buyer, the bookkeeper, the online coordinator, marketing and social media. I have to bring the energy and vibe to the store and to my staff and set an example for them. Which can be hard sometimes when I have invoices that are running behind on payment, a bunch of new product that needs to go up online, purchase orders I need to have in by deadline etc...
What's been the most fun part of your job?
The most fun and rewarding is definitely the amazing people I have met along the way and seeing the community of amazing women we have created at Rebel Muse. From our customers to my wonderful team who are the most willing and dedicated bunch of women I have ever met. We honestly have so much fun and such a laugh in store or on our blog or on social media on a daily basis. Oh and the clothes and shoes of course, buying and fashion week! Love it all!
You must be super organised! Although how will you manage it all? Can you share your wisdom to other business owners please!?
I wish I was more organised haha. Lists. I write so many lists. I have one master list of all the big things that need to get done to reach a certain goal or deadline i.e for opening Peachy Keen. And then I have a daily list of the tasks I need to get done that day. I write my list in order of importance too. But things don’t always go to plan. The eftpos terminal might go down, or the website, or the computer crash or we have a sudden crazy busy day in store and online and need to package and send off a heap of online sales! So things like this usually throw most of the days plan out the window. Its just a matter of rolling with the punches, prioritising the most important things, put your head down, bum up and keep working through. No time to get distracted by Facebook, TV, Internet, social life (unfortunately). Also delegating jobs and surrounding yourself with a team that you can trust and rely on. You have to train and build a team that know exactly where they need to be and what they need to be doing at all times.
Know that you have equipped them with the skills to handle any tasks or issues that may arise. Trust their decisions and judgment and don’t micro manage them. I am in Rebel Muse on the shop floor five days a week. Obviously now with Peachy Keen opening I won’t be able to be at Rebel Muse five days a week because I physically can’t be in two places at once (as much as I wish I could be). Catalina who is my Assistant manager at Rebel Muse is now going to Manager at that store and I will just be overseeing her and the team and providing the support she needs, while I manage Peachy Keen. I know she is more than capable of fulfilling this role. And I’m also super lucky that my boyfriend is also my business partner. He takes on some of the workload too. We have very different strengths and a clear idea of our roles in the business. You have to accept that you don’t always know all the answers and won’t always be right. So I don’t mind saying to him, “hey you will probably be better at this then me, what do you think we should do?”
In three words describe your personal style philosophy
Effortless, quality not quantity.
What would you never wear?
Pleather. Or a body con pencil skirt and crop top. Or much body con/bandage stuff in general. The odd little black body con dress here and there, but that’s about it. Nothing Kim Kardashian-esque.
What is the 'it shoe' we should be buying next season?
Mules! Definitely a pair of mules. Flat or heeled.
What should we be styling it with?
If you read our post on NYFW then you would know these should be styled with your frayed cropped straight or flared jeans or denim skirt/shorts.
With one store already here, and another one on the horizon, how do/will you make sure you make time for yourself?
That’s definitely hard. I usually have Sundays off. I still check my emails throughout the day and have my phone close by as I have the store send me check in emails. But I usually try to take a bit of time offline on Sundays. Instead you will find me brunching/lunching, going to the gym, walking or in summer I love spending time at the beach (it's my happy place). During the week you can often find me working at home till aroundmidnight. I try to make sure I get most things finished during the week so I can take that time to forget about most of it on Sunday. And I give myself one evening out a week for dinner with friends/family etc...
PS. The grand opening of Peachy Keen will be Saturday 22 October - lock it in your diaries now!
Tell us, what are some of your favourite shoe brands?