EB in LA:
A look back at our first pop-up store
It’s hard to believe that our first L.A. Pop Up has come to an end. The past four months flew by in a flash, and we learned more than we’d ever be able to write here.
To help us digest it all, we chatted with our L.A. store manager Nicole Briggs to talk late-night build outs, favorite fitting moments, the future of EB in L.A., and the utterly unexplainable uniqueness that is Abbot Kinney Boulevard.
Nicole is a long-time retail professional with a background in sales, management, journalism, styling and photography. Her expertise lies in client relations in a luxury retail setting, driving sales and building impactful teams.
EB: What were the preparations for the pop-up store like?
NB: The preparations were exciting and creative. I think EB is small enough where everyone could add useful ideas and execute the vision of the design team and then some. My background helped because for instance, we weren’t originally going to have a cash wrap, but that is something essential to any store to be able to ring up sales, wrap product, etc.
EB: What was it like building a pop-up store from the ground up?
NB: It was a challenge and fun at the same time. I really take ownership when I am part of projects like that and treat it as if it's my own business. You really have to have an entrepreneurial spirit when you do a pop-up and it helps to be a bit competitive as well. With the word "retailacolypse" floating around you have to make a great impression and think and act differently. [For example], I found the store's florist on the street in Venice. She was selling her floral arrangements guerilla style and we hired her for recurrent deliveries. I think everything from what candle you burn to what flowers you have in the store all influence what kind of experience the customer will have. Our boob art wall and "For the Love of Boobs" facade will be remembered for a long time by Abbot Kinney visitors.
EB: How did you choose the store staff? Tell us about them!
NB: I wanted a staff that believed in a healthy company culture and community, particularly a sisterhood, since only women worked at the pop-up. I envisioned a diverse team of women from different backgrounds so that the staff could mimic the inclusion and diversity that Evelyn & Bobbie is known for due to its complexion palette. To measure breasts all day takes a certain "touch" and I found that women from bridal backgrounds have the finesse to measure women comfortably. So two of my fitters had a bridal background: Linda Leising from Monique L'huillier and Tanya Petro from Panache.
Women have struggled to find the right bra for a long time, and it can be a touchy subject if they have had breast cancer, breast reduction, or extremely large breasts that are difficult to find proper support for. My team were all seasoned retail or fashion professionals. Aisha Rae is a busy wardrobe consultant/stylist and Shayla Fite has worked in luxury retail for Louis Vuitton and Yves Saint Laurent.
EB: Did you have any favorite fitting moments?
NB: I had an African-American woman so elated to have found a bra close to her complexion that she ran out the store in joy screaming "I got a brown bra! Finally!" I also had a Saudi woman buy multiple Mica bras for herself and her family and would have bought more if we had them onsite. Since she was traveling, and we do not ship internationally yet, she bought as much as she could. That was my biggest sale during the pop-up.
EB: What do you think of the Everyday Bustier? What do you like wearing your EB with?
NB: I think the Everyday Bustier is a total game changer. The whole idea of a 3-D bra with memory foam that supports from the core should have been invented years ago. I think it does mold to your bust over time, and I don't notice or feel my bra throughout the day like I do with underwire bras. It is definitely the best strapless and convertible bra I own. I love wearing my EB as a racerback bra, an option I did not have before and would just go braless with dresses and tops that were racerback.
EB: What will you miss most about the Abbot Kinney store?
NB: The store was so adorable and different from anything on the block, and any other store period. The art made it special, and both men and women truly loved stopping in whether they were interested in the bra or not. I worked on Abbot Kinney prior for four years and knew the area very well. I will miss being there every day, watching people scoot by on Birds, and having Gjelina and Salt & Straw right down the street. It is one of the coolest neighborhoods in L.A. for sure.
EB: What was your favorite piece in the boob art gallery?
NB: My favorite piece was the wood carved bust. I think it was Peruvian.
EB: What’s next in the world of EB pop-ups?
NB: Evelyn & Bobbie will pop-up again at Beverly Center mid-October so stay tuned for more details. See you soon!