The Perfect Fit: Boutique Owner

By Danny Freedman
Tuesday, April 26, 2005 5:18 PM

Lindsay Buscher, 27 -- JOB: Owner of Georgetown boutique Urban Chic.

SALARY: $45,000, though small business owners pick their pay, she said, ranging from nothing to everything.

EDUCATION: Bachelor's in political science from Salisbury State University; master's in public administration from University of Baltimore.

WHAT SHE DOES: Buscher is the creative force behind the store she opened nearly a year ago, overseeing inventory, layout and more. She heads to New York five or so times a year to snap up items destined to be next season's hot sellers; she also monitors trends by tracking who's wearing what on TV and in magazines. "We'll put a picture of [Cameron Diaz] wearing Rock & Republics on our front table, and those jeans will sell out in one day," she said.

WOULD YOU WANT HER JOB?: Not if you have a low tolerance for risk. Buscher is still in search of "that number" -- exactly how much stuff to buy without under or overstocking the store. Hiring workers who care as much as she does can also be tough. Some have great interviews, then "just kind of mope around and are lazy."

HOW YOU CAN GET HER JOB: Have a great idea, then secure funding and a killer location. Buscher, who's been "obsessed" with fashion since middle school, borrowed start-up money from her father-in-law ("I realize how lucky I am," she said). She worked with a commercial real-estate broker to find a choice spot, with major foot traffic and little competition.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Details on starting a business in the District are available at The D.C. Chamber of Commerce Business Resource Center offers counseling and information on loans. The U.S. Small Business Administration's local office offers training, consulting and loan information.

This article first appeared in the Express on February 14, 2005.

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