Living The World of Fashion Buying In The Fashion Markets

As you may already know, I possess a deep passion for fashion buying. I consider it more than a hobby. I see it as an opportunity to innovate and bring something different to El Paso and my beloved clients. Fashion Markets are huge trade shows that showcase emerging trends and styles of upcoming spring/fall collections each season. The U.S Fashion Market is hosted annually in notorious cities like Atlanta, Las Vegas, New York, and Dallas. I usually attend the markets in NYC, which is part of the “Big Five” fashion capitals in the world, and the Fashion Market in Dallas, as it allows me to be back in El Paso by the end of the day. The world of fashion buying is a world of its own. It’s exciting, inspiring and exhilarating, to say the least. For the past 11 years, I have attended the U.S Fashion Markets for just about every season. This year, however, my heart felt the need to try something different. So we spiced things up.

A Not So Merry Christmas

Every year around the holiday season, things usually move at a faster pace up as clients are actively shopping for glam party outfits and searching for unique gifts for their loved ones. To my surprise and disappointment, the Holiday Season of 2019 was quite different. Silence and solitude filled the walls of GAL. We were experiencing something we had luckily never experienced before, a major decrease in sales and traffic in what was supposed to be our busiest season yet.

If you know me, I could not sit still and let this go by. So I took charge, dug in, and decided it was time for a change. Little did I know that change would mean having to go overseas.

Fashion Market Take 1

Upon one of my trips to the Dallas Market, I was lucky enough to meet an interesting, powerful woman who would change my life forever. This woman had a unique showroom inhabited by amazing international brands and products. From jaw-dropping handbags made in Brazil and Italian headbands, to one of a kind jewelry made in Venezuela, you name it. This woman had it all. Every single piece I touched, every single piece I loved. (TIP: Whenever you come across a one of a kind piece that you won’t find anywhere else, make it yours. It is one of those things that you fall in love with and it eventually transcends into your life and your story.) This is also how I select pieces for GAL. I buy one of a kind pieces that make my heart skip a beat. Also, you won’t find them anywhere else ;)

As I shared my fashion obsessions and life values with this woman, she in return shared her story and her years of experience as a showroom owner specializing in unique and exclusive international brands. In addition, I ended up purchasing exclusive items from every single line in her showroom! And for the first time in a long time, I felt excited. A feeling that I had been missing without knowing.

The unique products I purchased from her completely sold out in less than two weeks. I was humbled by the amazing response the international products were receiving. My clients seem to love and responded well to the exclusivity and uniqueness of the products. And let me tell you, they were not something you could easily find online, which made them a total hit!

We chatted for hours. Among her valuable advice was to attend the “ White Show,” the one of a kind Milan Market, to explore and discover a new world in the fashion industry. To be completely honest, I don’t know why I had not thought about buying products abroad before. I guess I figured the only “way” was to buy from US vendors . However, this woman inspired me and opened a door with many new roads. I did my research, took a leap of faith, and before you knew it I was on a plane along with my assistant, Marilyn, to Milan for an unforgettable European Fashion Week! An adventure I will for sure never forget.

Last New York Fashion Week

Before traveling across the globe, I made a pit stop in NYC for Fashion Week. As usual, I made appointments with all the vendors I have closely worked with for the past five years. However, this time it was very different. I didn’t feel the thrill and excitement when exposed to the new merchandise as I usually do. I did not know why. What I did know for sure is that whatever I was experiencing at that moment, did not match up to the vision I had for the future of GAL. I had to make a change.

I then decided to drop five of the top-selling brands. Why may you ask? Because when you own five tracksuits you have them all. When you have 4 blouses in different prints and colors from the same brand and style you have it all. Been there. Done that. Why keep selling what is working as a stylist who is constantly looking to evolve and offer the next big thing to my clients? We need to evolve to new trends and not keep offering the same items and styles year after year only because it sells. As a stylist, boutique owner, and fashion aficionado, it is my duty and responsibility to find the best, up and coming exclusive trends and styles. I may have lost myself in offering commercial items, and along with it, lost inspiration and motivation. I experienced buying what was selling versus buying what I loved. I missed out on taking risks and innovating without fear.

It’s hard to take a step back and realize that you need change. My heart was screaming for me to stop and take a bold risk. “ Drop the lines and trust yourself,” I repeatedly told myself while holding on to a bit of doubt. I was not confident that I was taking a step forward in the right direction, but instead a few steps back. I had to believe and trust myself. Then I realized, if we can easily buy these items online, why do I even want to carry them? Why would I be like everyone else? What is it that makes GAL Fashion unique and makes it stand out from the crowd?

So I dropped the lines. I had awkward conversations with my vendors and decided it was time for a new era for GAL Fashion. There it was. The end of something great, and the beginning of a new era.

Next stop, Milan, Italy.

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That’s right, friends. We are now on the hunt to expand our team of expert stylists as we hire qualified marketing and sales specialists. As we take great pride in our brand and culture, our team standards are high – but the rewards are sweet!

Still with me? Read on for what it takes to be considered to join the GAL Fashion team. The position will remain open until we find the right candidate(s), so please share this opportunity if you know someone fabulous who fits the bill.

Our next Marketing & Sales Expert possesses the following qualities:

  • A unique and keen fashion sense

  • A passion for fashion and the what it entails (craftsmanship, design, styling, etc.)

  • A positive attitude

  • Desire and willingness to learn

  • An outgoing personality

  • Creativity

  • Self-starter who takes initiative

  • Social media savvy

Full disclosure: When I started my journey in the fashion industry, I had zero experience or relevant education. I had desire, passion, and the willingness to learn. After I approached (and was initially rejected from) a high-end boutique, I gratefully accepted an unpaid internship that ultimately led to gainful employment, retail and buyer experience, and paved the way to opening my own business a few years later.

I’m looking to build a team with individuals who are equally as hungry, as passionate, and as dedicated to fashion, as I was and still am. This opportunity will begin with a weeklong unpaid working interview, and evolve from there, with compensation commensurate with experience, and there is always room for growth within the company.

Still interested? Fabulous. Email Gesuina@galfashion.com and let’s grow your career together!

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In October of last year, I came up with an idea to create an adult lounge where customers could enjoy a good time in an elegant and stylish space. A place where good music was a focus and guests could feel comfortable in an upscale atmosphere. Nothing really fit the bill in El Paso, but after much market research, I realized it was an undertaking I wasn’t prepared for — on my own. As luck would have it, things changed in January, and I was fortunate to connect with a great group of partners (including an existing restaurant owner!) to forge this new adventure.

We developed a pop-up restaurant and bar experience that services a high-end clientele, while maintaining a distinct flavor and edge, with curated music from greats like George Michael, Pet Shop Boys and even Spanish artists like Timbiriche.

My new partners let me know that I’d be considered a promoter — a term that was entirely new to me, so I turned to Google to figure out exactly what a promoter does, and what makes a great one. A great promoter, I came to discover, is a hard worker, a hustler, someone with their finger on the pulse of the city. Someone like Troy Gordon from @Troygordonnyc, a New York City-based real estate mogul and restaurant and club promoter.

On a whim, I reached out to him to see if he would serve as a mentor for me, and to my surprise and delight, he responded. Coincidentally, I was heading to Manhattan that weekend for Fall Market, so we made plans to meet. When he asked to meet at 12, I assumed he meant the afternoon — but I should have known — he meant 12 AM! Typically in El Paso, I’m asleep by 10 p.m., but this late night intrigued me so I eagerly accepted. We met at 1OAK, a New York City nightclub, and he immediately introduced me to a fellow fashionista from Canada who also owns a contemporary boutique. The entire evening was surreal, packed with beautiful people, beautiful places, good vibes and great music. Troy’s passion for people and nightlife was palpable, and I am happy to share same spark.

I explained to him my concept and asked him his advice on how I should execute, and his advice was succinct: “Trust me — do a brunch.”

I came back to El Paso so inspired and ready to unleash what I had learned. I called my partners and pitched a brunch, and now. Within that same week of my return, I implemented all I had learned on my trip and mobilized my friends to have a trial run. GAL clients were invited and shopped for brunch outfits, got dolled up, set the ambiance, queued up the DJ and opened the doors. The mood was set and I was in my element. To see our clients dressed to the nines, with the florals, fashion and food. My vision had come to life and I was ready for more. So goes the birth of the GAL Brunch. We hosted our recent event at local hotspot, Gusto. All of our readers and clients were invited, dressed to impress and ready for a good time. Where class and elegance met for a party in the city of El Paso.

Elia

Alex

Ambar

Sofia

Cristina

Marissa

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Hooray! It’s officially been two years since we’ve opened the doors at GAL Fashion. As I write this, I am holding back tears reflecting about what it’s taken to create and upkeep this beautiful sanctuary. GAL is more than just a store to me, it’s more than fashion — it’s my identity, my creation, my vision, my dreams realized, and my life lessons, all in one place. It’s where I get to meet new people, meet new opportunities, new friends and ideas.

On April 11, 2018 we celebrated 2 years of GAL Fashion. Themed “THE GAL-LERY,” we created a small art gallery of fashion, with live mannequins curated as art, and Warhol-inspired paintings as decorative elements. I wanted this year to be better than last, so we ordered ornate thrones, ice sculptures and glitter cakes. (Yes, I can be a little extra, but you only turn 2 once!) We were honored to have special guest Scheana Marie Shay from Vanderpump Rules join us at the party.

Special thanks to Mesa Street Bar & Grill for providing the food, Bttrmilk for the sweets and treats, and Thousand Grams Club for the amazing custom art pieces created for us. A special shout out to Ladonna Apodaca for always throwing a great party, Viva + Impulse Creative Co. for bringing my ideas to life, Dav Anmed, for great photos, Tony Cedillo for our recap video, Bazaar Models for always providing the most gorgeous models in town, and most of all, a sincere THANK YOU to my staff for always sticking with me, being loyal, uplifting me in the hard times, and for helping GAL Fashion grow!

Favorite

Ana

Betina

Andy

Bex

Cz

Dina

Helena

Paige

Pt

Shizzie

Zz

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The City Magazine’s Top 30 Under 30 award is a well-known honor that has been bestowed upon some of El Paso’s most talented and ambitious residents, those who have made an impact on the community despite their young age. I’ve always been hesitant to participate in any kind of contest like this, but to my surprise, a few close friends nominated me this year. To my greater surprise — I won!

I’m incredibly honored to be named amongst the Top 30 Under 30, especially since my journey has been full of risks, adventures and pushing myself to my limits. In 2010, I started my career as unpaid intern, just so that I could be a part of the retail industry. Years later, after I was hired as a stylist, I took another unpaid internship as a Buyer. I proved my mettle, learned from my mentor about how to run a high-end retail boutique and grew ready to take on my own store.

During this time, I opened up the first blow dry bar in El Paso, and along side my partners, created a new phenomenon in the city. Staying true to my vision of contributing to the growth of El Paso, I stepped away from the blow dry bar in 2016 to pursue my dream and open GAL Fashion. My vision was to cater to my clients as though they were my friends (and most have become friends!), to do away with commission-based sales, and to style with honesty and integrity. To this day, I tell everyone who I style that if I am working for them, they are representing GAL, and therefore they will always leave looking and feeling their best.

After our first successful year, we expanded space and services to closet organizing and consultations. It was then, after seeing countless gowns that had been forgotten after one wear, I was inspired to create a 501c3 nonprofit organization called The Cinderella Foundation. The Cinderella Foundation accepts donated gowns at GAL, and where underserved girls can visit and enjoy the same styling experience as other customers at no cost. This is a cause close to my heart, since I felt insecure and out of place in high school.

The City Magazine asked a few fun questions during my interview that I feel are worth sharing:

Q: What is your favorite karaoke song? A: Hotel California by The Eagles

Q: What is your favorite TV show to binge? A: Real Housewives of Beverly Hills

Q: What do you love about El Paso? A: I truly feel it’s the land of opportunity! Although I will commute eventually, I will never leave the place I call home.

Dav 3769

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