The I See You Company

Employee to Store Owner, meet Lillie!

Employee to Store Owner, meet Lillie!

It’s Wednesday again and you know what time is! It’s #WCW. Yes, that’s Woman Crush Wednesday!

It’s time to shine a spotlight on all the amazing things women are doing, creating and building in this world!

So on #WCW you can expect to have some real, honest I See You Moments! I See You® Candle and wishes to follow!

Grace Ellenburg - The I See You Company Blog

Today’s I See You® blog features the sweetest southern young lady, Lillie Grace Ellenburg, owner of The Heirloom Shop in Franklin, TN.

In a leap of faith for her and her family, Lillie took ownership of The Heirloom Shop in October 2017.

A fun fact is that The Heirloom Shop is one of original stores in historic downtown Franklin, TN. 

AND her employee, Miss Selma, has been with the shop since 1990 and is still there every Tuesday and Wednesday!

Lillie has carefully & intentionally chosen every square inch of the items in The Heirloom Shop.

Whether it’s their Old World Ornaments, party themed gifts or their custom made throw pillows, there is something for every occasion. Including our very own I See You® Candle!

This woman is all about making sure you have whatever you may need to commemorate any celebration or milestone.  

That’s what I call I SEE You Values!! Here’s a little more about Lillie in her own words!

What or who inspired you to create your business? Tell us about your business?

If you were to ask my mom, she would have told you that I have been in sales since the age of five, but for me, my inspiration came from the gap year I took before college. During that year, I traveled to new places and started working at The Heirloom Shop between my adventures. After just one day at the shop, I was hooked. Retail just got in my blood and ever since then, I knew that I wanted to own my own retail businesses. That was nearly seven years ago, and as of 2017 my main gig is owning and running the place that started it all, The Heirloom Shop!

Who saw you and supported your dreams?

My parents, family, friends and former employer. None of this would have even been possible if the former owners of the store hadn't believed in me. I had just started working at the store in May right after I graduated from college. I had been working there for just a few weeks before they asked if I would ever be interested in owning the store. Being a recent college graduate and having no money, I just told them I would have to talk to my parents. After several conversations with my parents and then my parents talking to the owners by September we started the process of purchasing the store and on October 6th, 2017 we became the owners of The Heirloom Shop! From then on, with the help of my parents, siblings and a lot of sweet friends, we have been able to transform the shop into my dream store and my baby. I am so thankful for all of them because without them I would not be where I am today!

What song heals your soul?

This can quickly change depending on the day, week or the weather outside! Right now though my go-to song has been Reckless Love by Cory Asbury. If you haven't heard this song, stop and listen to it now! It is the perfect song for any occasion if you're sad, happy, or just wanna roll the windows down and belt out some lyrics, it covers it all!

What does it mean to YOU to feel seen?

My personality is the type to just make sure that everyone else is taken care of and feeling seen that I tend to put myself on the back burner. Now that being said I do enjoy that feeling of being seen. For me, it's the little things that really make the difference. If I'm overwhelmed with work and super stressed and a family member or friend notices and just asks if they can help, stops by the store to check in or even an extra bonus brings me my favorite treat, a diet coke, that is what I love the most.

What’s your go-to, self-care tip?

Do something that makes you feel good! When I just need some “me” time, or a little TLC my go-to is just taking a day to relax! I LOVE getting my hair done! I will also schedule a facial or massage. I just feel that you need to do something that makes you feel good. Find the thing that works for you and give you the boost you need when you are feeling stressed out and like you are at your wits end! I love being pampered and it’s the best thing for me to get me back on track!

Growing up, did you play an instrument and/or did you participate in any organized sports?  How do you think these activities helped shape you as a person?

I played sports my whole life. I feel like at some point I have played every sport under the sun! As I started high school I really just focused on basketball and volleyball. I feel that being on a team has helped me work better with others. There were times when I played on travel teams with people that I didn't know or didn't get along with, but I knew that I was there for a reason and had to put those feelings aside. There have been times and I have no doubt there will be more, where I work with someone who I just don't mesh with and learning those skills early, to put aside feelings for the bigger picture has really made a difference. I also have realized from sports that in life too, sometimes you can put in all the work and do your best but sometimes you still don't get the outcome you were hoping for. Overall, I think playing sports and having to be a team player has shaped me and given me skills I can use throughout my whole life!

What advice would you give your younger self?

Advice that I would give my younger self would be, no matter how much you try to plan it’s not going to work out exactly how you planned, but it'll be so much better than you ever imagined! After college I had a 5-year plan, but little did I know that God had much bigger and better plans for me! I would tell her that your life isn't going to look like the person to your left or to your right and that is okay. I am still reminding myself of this every now and again.

What’s one piece of advice you’d give someone thinking about starting their own company?

Have fun with it! Once the fun of it leaves you that’s when it really starts to feel like work and you will get burnt out! I am all about supporting other people who want to start a small business. I have had several people ask me about owning a store and the ins and outs of the business. I am always so happy to help, but I also want to make sure they see the reality in it! I feel that so many times people think "I want to be a store owner and it'll be so fun and I'll get to do whatever I want." It isn't until they are actually in the business that they realize how much of their time it really takes to run a business.

I always laugh when I travel, especially with other people who may have a normal 9-5 job, because my phone will not stop ringing or buzzing with emails! When you run your own business there is no away message that you get to put on your email or shutting your phone down! It truly is a 24/7 commitment! There are many things that I have had to miss out on because of the store, but at the end of the day, I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world!

My advice would be to follow your gut, take risks and make sure you have a good work-life balance, find your go-to self-care things and use them! There are so many business owners who just get so burnt out because they never want to leave their "baby.” One thing I’ve started doing after the rush of the holiday season, the whirlwind of market and just working nonstop, I hop on a plane and head down to Florida to visit my grandmother. I rest, relax and recharge! At the end of the trip I am always ready to come home to my "baby."

 Lillie with her brother and sister

Lillie, WE SEE YOU!!

We love your excitement for what you are creating.

We appreciate the passion you have for your customers and desire to create a memorable experience with The Heirloom Shop.

We celebrate you today and the many successful years of business to come.

Simply put, Lille is a vibrant young woman. She and her family have curated a phenomenally welcoming environment at The Heirloom Shop that must be on your places to go when you are in downtown Franklin, TN.

We hope you join us in celebrating this amazing woman!

Don’t forget to show her some support by following her on Instagram and Facebook and next time you visit historic downtown Franklin, you better stop in!


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