Owning her own boutique had always been a pipe dream for Katrina Pope, a preschool teacher by day.
But through encouragement from her husband, Bobby, Katrina opened The Burlap Closet at 405 W. Will Rogers Blvd. in August of 2014.
“It was one of those ‘someday, I would like to if I could.’ My husband just pushed me into it. He said, ‘this is what you were born to do,’” she laughed. “Because I love shopping; I love putting outfits together, and I love helping people put outfits together.”
“So, after a few anxiety attacks … we got this place.”
Katrina said she knew she wanted her store to be downtown. So where does a school-teacher go to get advice on how to get in downtown?
She went straight to Chelsea Mize, owner of the Cranberry Merchant and Katrina’s child’s former teacher. Chelsea gave her a heads up on that 405 W. Will Rogers was opening up, and Katrina was sealing the deal that night.
“I love what downtown is turning out to be. I can see where it’s going,” she said. “Everyone is different. No one is the same … you get to show more of your personality, and it’s like a little community.”
Katrina, a mother of three, had little experience as a store owner. She was a loan officer prior to having children, stayed home with her littles one until they went off to school and then became a preschool teacher so her hours mirrored those of her children.
“It was a huge learning curve,” she said. “But I love this. My kids can come up here to help me …
It’s something that as they get older can be a family business.”
Her two girls are already talking about follow in their mother’s footsteps – They plan to open their own boutique during college – about seven years from now.