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GRAND FALLS-WINDSOR, N.L.
Two St. John’s online entrepreneurs are coming home to try their hand temporarily at a brick-and-mortar business.
Emily Evans and Lauren Saunders, who hail from Grand Falls-Windsor, are behind the clothing brand The Shop, Salt. The brand logo uses the alchemy symbol for Earth, which looks like an upside down A, in place of the A in Salt. The brand name is a reference to the phrase “salt of the Earth,” meaning people who are authentic and good-natured, their marketing material says.
Evans and Saunders, lifelong friends, started the business about a year-and-a-half ago with a simple grey sweatshirt emblazoned with the simple Salt logo. It quickly took off through word of mouth.
“Instagram in particular has been a great way to share our products,” said Evans. “It was extremely important particularly before we had our website, as a way to showcase who we were.”
The temporary physical location launched Nov. 17 on Hardy Ave. in Grand Falls-Windsor and will remain open until Dec. 23, or until stock runs out.
The women say it is a good test for a potential permanent space, which is definitely part of the long-term plan, they said, but not on the immediate horizon.
“We don’t feel any pressure to obtain a permanent physical space at this time,” Saunders said. “This opportunity just presented itself, and we thought it would be a great experience.”
The duo shared a love of art, fashion and design and dreamed of being in business together since they were teens, but said they “chickened out” after high school and pursued separate careers. Those careers did set them up for their new venture, however. Evans became a photographer while Saunders went into digital marketing.
They both still work full-time in those careers, which presents its challenges
“The hardest part for us is managing our time,” Evans said. “It can be challenging to find the time to build the business.”
It is well worth it, though.
“The most rewarding part is being able to work on this outrageously fun project together,” Saunders said. “We are always having so much fun, coming up with new ideas and creations. For two lifelong friends, we feel incredibly lucky.”
Merchandise in the store includes their standard line plus a few new items for winter, and something they are keeping under their hats for the time being.
“We just released a beautiful new Canadian-made toque,” Evans said. “We also just had a full line come out last month that included new leggings and jackets.
“However, we will have one more surprise before Christmas.”