Owner of PSA Boutique, Shakyra J.
At the young age of 22, Shakyra J. is both a student and owner of an online boutique (PSA Boutique), that first started as a fictional project. Shakyra was born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and attended Harcum College, where she received her Associate’s degree in Fashion Merchandising. Now, she attends Drexel and majors in Design and Merchandising.
During her retail project that was assigned at Harcum, Shakyra was tasked with the duty of choosing a name for her fictional boutique. “I struggled for days coming up with an intriguing business name because I knew that I wanted to create my own business in real life, so that was the perfect time to brainstorm,” says Shakyra. “PSA stands for Public Style Announcement. The acronym holds the belief that everyone should strive to be an individual and we should all fearlessly express ourselves.”
PSA Boutique launched online on May 5, 2015, which was during the time Shakyra graduated from Harcum College. “It started as just an idea but it was a lot of research and planning, until I was able to get the funds to get my idea off of the ground. I gave myself a timeline of when I wanted to launch my business. My goal was to graduate Harcum College with my degree and have launched my online boutique at the same time,” says Shakyra. Talk about a go-getter right?
Currently, Shakyra does not work with any investors, nor does she have a business partner; although she does think that things would be a little bit easier if she did have them. Wholesale is the method Shakyra uses for her business, and to her surprise, it has been very rewarding and successful. “I have connected with several different vendors and popular brands, that I would have never thought I would be able to reach at this premature stage of being a business owner. I have learned that it’s all about taking risks and doing a ton of research,” says Shakyra. She also adds that she purchases her inventory in small quantities in order to maintain a “boutique style.” In other words, she wants to keep her pieces unique and unlike what everyone else has.
When asked to picture PSA in three years, Shakyra says “I see PSA Boutique in so many places. I get excited thinking about it because I know that this is only the beginning for my boutique. In just a few months, PSA has been a vendor at popular street festivals reaching thousands of people, we have been doing well with online sales, we have a pop-up shop college tour coming soon, in the fall and not to mention we are being featured on Klassified. But, in three years I see PSA being amongst some of the most popular shopping sites in the fashion community and opening our first brick and mortar in Philadelphia.