We had the good fortune of connecting with Ellen Andrades and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Ellen, what do you attribute your success to?
The most important factor behind the success of my THRIFTY ELLS brand is networking and initiating collaborative projects with other creatives who share my sense of style, passion, and work ethics. There is so much power in networking because it can open doors to so many opportunities. I also focus on creating authentic engagement by being consistent with sharing quality content, being responsive to my social media followers, sharing valuable tips, and staying true to the image I want to represent.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
My name is Ellen also known as Thrifty Ells. I am the founder of “Thrift With Ells” an affordable personal shopping service designed to help women and men enhance their professional and personal style. Thrifting is my passion because it allows me to be creative with my style, save money, and help the environment. I have been thrifting and reselling my finds for several years, but within the past year I have been intentional about promoting and building my personal shopping brand. Living in Atlanta, the fashion industry can be overly saturated and people can get caught up in popularity and status. The factor that sets me apart is that I am just as dope online as I am in person! I don’t change when the cameras are off, I am free to be my authentic self at all times. No matter my situation, I always maintain a positive outlook on life and value every single opportunity I get to have a positive impact on someone’s life. I’m always open to networking and collaborative projects. I have learned that building my network and nurturing relationships is key to growing personally and professionally. The art of thrifting takes a lot of patience, creativity, and resilience. Many people become overwhelmed when they step inside a thrift store. Some thrift stores can be cluttered and unorganized. My business has it’s challenges because the industry is forever changing; there are always new techniques and trends, but I embrace change and put in the effort to stay educated and innovative with my services. I think the most important lesson for me has been “VALUE”; not getting caught up in competition but making sure that I am providing value to my client’s brand and styling needs. I want my clients to feel appreciated for trusting me with their shopping and wardrobe needs. I want the world to see my passion and drive behind what I do! To sustain motivation over time and to harness willpower to keep going when times are tough, passion is not just important, but integral to building a successful business. I love helping others step outside of their comfort zone to determine their uniqueness. I am so grateful for opportunities such as this to share my story with the world!

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I’m definitely a socialite and love to hang out with my friends and experience new places. Living in Atlanta, there is always something fun to do and interesting people to meet. So here’s the itinerary if my bestie was visiting me for the week! Monday – Mojave Restaurant (High Quality Latin Cuisine) – I love a relaxing patio vibe. The restaurant is uniquely designed with a patio overlooking a lake. The food is tasty, the cocktails have all fresh ingredients, and the customer service is excellent. Tuesday – Burn Atlanta (Cigar Lounge located inside the Battery) – Half off appetizers! This place is nice and intimate, great for date night, girls night out, or just having a solo drink at the bar. Wednesday – Wine Bottle Wednesdays at Tribeca Restaurant in Buckhead. The vibe is sexy, food and drinks are great, and the dopest female DJ, DJ Stormy, makes it hard for you to sit in your chair! Thursday – Ladies night at the Patio Social Club – The live music by BK Jackson & DJ Ray is a whole vibe!!! Friday – Happy Hour drinks on the rooftop at Ponce City market overlooking the city skyline and a relaxing walk on the beltline. Saturday – Thrift shopping at my favorite thrift shops! This would definitely be the highlight of the trip because Atlanta has some of the best thrift shops. Thrift stores on the list would be Goodwill, Park Ave Thrift, Value Village, Platos Closet, and Revive Consignment. Sunday – Bestie Photo Shoot shot by Jonathan Hall of Randomcy Photography & Brunchin at the Beverly Restaurant featuring live music by the super talented Kameron Corvet.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would like to dedicate my Shoutout to my mother, Carol Irby. My mother is the constant drive behind building my brand. She always tells me, “Baby girl, you are going to be on the red carpet one day!” We can sit and talk for hours about my business ideas and different ways to style clothing. I can always count on her to be my biggest cheerleader. There have been many times I have felt discouraged, and she has been there to lift my spirits and remind me of my gift and God-given purpose.

Instagram: Thrifty_ells

Image Credits
Randomcy Tosin Fashina Kaylin James

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