In 2006, GlitterStarz began as a dream.
Where did it all begin?
Liz: I’ve been a cheerleader my whole life. I started gymnastics when I was 7, and I was a cheerleader in college at the University of Illinois Chicago. After college, I started my first job and was quickly promoted. I knew I could be successful where I was, but after 5 months I knew it just wasn’t for me. I called my mom and told her I wanted to start my own business. She didn't hesitate and she just said, "Ok, Elizabeth.What do you want to do? “
Jan: I knew because Liz continued her love of gymnastics and cheer all the way through college that it was a good path for her business. She's hard work and full of positive energy. I knew if she was happy, she could drive whatever she was doing all the way.
Liz: From the beginning, every idea I ever have, my mom helps me to implement. I push myself and allow my vision to continuously evolve and Jan remains steady. She's the foundation and the bread and butter of our business- making sure the customers are always happy and the orders are getting completed on time. And her memory is like a digital file cabinet.
What have you done differently from other companies over the past 10 years ?
Jan: We listen to the customer and we understand the customer’s orders are very important. They are the foundation of our business, so we keep in contact with them through the entire production process to ensure that they are happy.
Liz: And we focus on building relationships. This industry has become our life. Our customers and partners - some have been with us over a decade - and they are truly our friends. We know we are so much more than an apparel provider, we are a trusted wholesale partner who helps gyms and studios remain sustainable and diversify their revenue channels.
What are the main factors that determined your business’s success?
Liz: We are incredibly determined and focused. We have been doing this for over a decade now and its funny to look back 13 years ago – “Making the world sparkle one girl at a time” has always been our slogan, and it’s still true to this day. We started off making things by hand-- tutus and single items at craft fairs . We would sell one item at a time to moms, aunts, grandmothers who wanted gifts for their daughters, granddaughters, nieces. Then one day I met my first dance studio owner and she asked if I could do her studio t-shirts. She told me she had 100 students and I said "Yes! We Can Do That For You!" As soon as I finalized the sale with her my mom says "how are we going to do 100 t-shirts, Liz?" And of course we figured it out. We always figure it out. I always want to be better and setting goals for myself and this company keeps us expanding and finding success.
What makes GlitterStarz different?
Jan: I may be biased because I'm her mom, but what makes us different is we have Liz. She is a bright light. She spreads sparkle wherever she goes. And it's contagious. This team she has built is a powerful force. Everyone here is ALL IN and we know how to have fun and be the kind of Glitter Girls we promised ourselves we would always be.
Liz: But also branding has been important since the beginning. We love to stand out and we aren't afraid to be unapologetically girly. When we first started we were doing craft fairs and everyone had a white tent. We had a hot pink tent and it stood one foot taller than everyone else. We would overhear people on cell phones trying to find each other and they'd say "I'm right by the pink tent in front of GlitterStarz".