Hello Vancity: Conscious Entrepreneur, Jigme Love of Mine & Yours Co
By Alice Zhou, June 5, 2014
Mine & Yours is Vancouver’s first curated resale store. It is different than consignment in that they pay cash up-front for clothing.
Customers can shop their Vancouver boutique or online from around the world. In Vancouver, they buy, sell, and trade on-trend designer and luxury women’s clothing and accessories. They will soon be offering the buying function online.
Alice Zhu of Hello Vancity interviewed Mine & Yours Founder, Jigme Love for this story.
A: Tell us how it all got started?
J: Mine & Yours got started when I moved back to Vancouver about a year ago from living in Los Angeles. In LA, I only shopped at buy-sell-trade resale clothing stores and always had amazing designer clothing while barely spending any money. I would resell my clothes or trade clothes with the stores. I always had something new, but it wasn’t new; I was recycling fashion. When I moved back to Vancouver, I was surprised to find that there wasn’t any store in the city where I could do the same. I had also recently completed an MBA and was looking for a business idea to pursue. When I saw the market gap in Vancouver for a fashion resale store, I got to work on the business plan, and that’s where it all began!
A: Could you share with our readers when and how did you get obsessed with fashion and how has it affected your life?
J: I’m like most women…I like clothes and looking good and feeling good in clothes. We get really happy and excited over an amazing dress or a great pair of shoes. We even bond and form lasting friendships over fashion. In my case, all of this is certainly true and more. I have met amazing people through this business and the thread (pun intended!) that ties us all together…is fashion!
Joanna Chaffin, Jigme Love and Courtney Watkins of Mine & Yours.
A: What brands do you wear and favourite?
J: I am the anti-brand snob. I’ll wear anything as long as I feel good in it. That being said, I pray to Karl Lagerfeld every morning, and have asked my friends to bury me in CHANEL when I die. So yeah, CHANEL.
Mine & Yours luxury resale merchandise (CHANEL, Louis Vuitton, Christian Louboutin, Rebecca Minkoff).
A: Where do you source your merchandise from?
J: Well we are very lucky to have gotten to the point in our business where amazing merchandise literally walks in the door on a daily basis. We buy our clothing from stylish women in the general public. We also specifically buy from some key private suppliers in the fashion community – fashion bloggers, stylists, and hardcore fashion connoisseurs who shop around the world.
A: Do you notice fashion and colour trends based on the city? Which city in the world do you think is the most chic?
J: Every city definitely has a fashion vibe! Vancouver is casual and sporty, Miami is sexy, Paris is chic and moody, NYC is edgy, LA is cool and laidback, Milan is rich and somber, Zurich is business, the Hamptons is preppy….
My personal pick for top fashion city is London because it can’t be defined into one dominant sartorial category – there is so much variety and risk-taking. You get everything there from unashamedly posh, traditional crisp and tailored, punk, mod, and batsh*&t crazy. They love colours, textures, and structure, and playing around with it, deconstructing it, and turning it on its head. Whatever they’re wearing, they commit to it and don’t care what other people think. It’s freaking fantastic!
Photo of Jigme Love by Brittani Berlinghoff.
A: Growing up in a mixed family, what lessons did you learn about diversity and what type of reactions do you get from people?
J: Vancouver is very multicultural and Canada is so politically correct that I wasn’t even cognizant of my mixed-race status until I started travelling and living in other countries. Abroad, people refused to believe I was anything other than Chinese or Japanese, and certainly not “Canadian”. (I’m Tibetan-German-Canadian-American). At first I found it offensive but then I came to realize that it’s just their culture and to accept it and have fun with it. French people would ask me to tell them if the sushi at a party was good or not, I would taste it, then nod and bow and say “Konichiwa”. That seemed to satisfy them.
A: As a female entrepreneur, what advice do you want to give other women who are considering starting their own business?
1- Mindset is everything – Keep your headspace stable, healthy, and positive
2- Surround yourself with people smarter than you and seek out mentors. Associate with people whose success you wish to emulate.
3- Don’t feel like you need to have traditional “male” traits like competitiveness and assertiveness to get ahead. You can be a successful businessperson by embracing traditional feminine qualities like empathy, communication, collaboration, playfulness, emotion, and nurturing, and incorporating these traits into your business branding, culture, and strategy.
4- Write a business plan. Think it through, get feedback, and plan it out.
5- Do it! Take action and just get out there and do it!
A: Some people are seriously addicted to luxury brands, and max out their credit card, any advice for fashion addicts?
J: Come see me! I will give them cash for their luxury goods or trade other luxury goods with them. Also shop from me – you can get luxury goods at up to 80% off the original retail prices at my store or on my online store www.mineandyours.co
A: If you had unlimited financial resource right now, what would you be doing, and where would you be in the world?
J: I’d be doing exactly what I’m doing right now, building the business of my dreams….but I’d doing it in something slightly fancier than a Car2go.
A: Who inspires you?
J: Oprah Winfrey and Richard Branson. Successful business people that do things with compassion and heart and a wild sense of fun.
A: Your bucket list?
1) Sit Front row at a CHANEL show
2) milk a cow
3) do scandalous things on a private jet
If you like what you saw, and want to find out more you can find them on 1065 Hornby Street in Downtown Vancouver, closed on Monday, Tues-Sat 11am-7pm, Sunday 12pm-6pm. Tel: 604 620-8885, email: email@example.com, website: www.mineandyours.co or you could follow them on social media.
instagram: http://instagram.com/mineandyoursco @mineandyoursco
twitter: https://twitter.com/MineandYoursCo @MineandYoursCo