Speaking with the business-savvy woman behind the successful vintage clothing shop SPICE, Gracie Collier tells Limerick Voice reporter Holly Kenny her tips and tricks to running a business.
Describing herself as always being “creative and hippy-dippy”, Gracie Collier opened SPICE in March 2018, and has been proud of the progress she has made since in such a short space of time.
“The genuineness and the intent of what I’m doing is coming across and the response has been amazing,” Gracie says.
“It’s been a really nice steady flow, it hasn’t necessarily blown up and overwhelmed me. It’s just been really steadily consistent which is what you want.”
After spending two months of setting up the shop we know today as SPICE located in Harvey’s Quay with her father, a large worry amongst the people around her was about the expenses of starting a new business.
To tackle this, she had a mind frame set in place: “Anything that needed money to be taken out of my account, even for something like a paintbrush went through three things: Can I make it? Can I borrow it? And do I need it?”
“Usually, by the third thing, you have your answer. People think that you need a huge amount of money and that scares people away, but that’s not the truth at all if you’re savvy or clever about it,” Gracie adds.
“The level of personal development needed to be an entrepreneur is massive. You need to realise that your own mind can be the damnation of your own business.”
“I think it’s such a massive thing especially with young people and social media, we’re pressured to do something mega and be out in the world doing something,” Gracie says.
“There’s nothing wrong with doing something that’s small-scale and humble as long as you’re happy within yourself and contributing to the world positively.”
A huge aspect of the SPICE brand is the aesthetic on Instagram, a lot of people approach Gracie Collier for advice on how to spice up their Instagram feed.
“I think it helps people connect with what I’m doing so I try and be myself as much as I can,” she says. “I don’t like things being too business-like and I don’t like things being too rigid. I definitely want to use it as a platform to make people feel good and make people laugh.”
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Got caught side eyeing while moving furniture to make room for activities… never a dull moment in this place..NAT.. plenty of them to be sure, the dullest being trying to get boys to push the boat out and try new styles COMON LADS WHATS THE WORST THAT COULD HAPPEN? You get slagged for like 15 mins and then there all wearing it next week! haha p.s thank you so much for all the lovely messages about my Van Gogh Tee (not vintage btw) #SPICE #SPICEVINTAGELIMERICK
Although in the grand scheme of things, Gracie Collier is the one running the show, she is hugely grateful to those who help her run the business day-by-day.
“My family is a massive part on why this place is the way it is. My dad built the shop with me, my mum holds my stock in the good sitting room at our house, and my sister is minding the shop for me tomorrow while I go to London.
“If it was stressful I wouldn’t do it. There’s no point creating something that will stress you because you’re doing this to yourself. It’s mad busy sometimes but it’s brilliant,” she adds.
As for future plans, Gracie has an abundance of plans for how she will grow and promote SPICE while also diving into new projects. The project she is currently working on is creating a clothing line with her sister who lives in London which will be ten pieces in vintage style.
Lastly, Gracie ensured that Limerick has been such a supportive community in running a business and she is ‘fully indebted’ to the people of Limerick.
“I honestly want to say thank you to everyone who has embraced SPICE in their lives and get it and love it and to the people who have supported the business from the start.”