When he was unable to find clothing that matched his style and budget, Corey Bishop decided he wanted to sell quality clothing at affordable prices to cater to people like himself. He didn’t let the fact that he had only a car and $500 to his name hold him back.
In 2004, Bishop loaded his car with his products and began a mobile clothing tour, driving from neighborhood to neighborhood matching people with the items best fit their styles. After a successful year and half of Bishop’s car-based business, a brick-and-mortar location became a possibility.
His decision to open the store in Five Points West came after careful, strategic planning. Bishop assessed the amount of income he received from each of the neighborhoods he had sold clothing in and found that the most revenue was generated in Five Points West, making it the obvious choice for the home of Refresh Clothing.
Fourteen years after starting his business from his car, Bishop’s personal assistance to his customers holds just as strong. He and his staff act as personal stylists for everyone who comes through the door of their store.
“You come in, tell us where you’re going and how much money you have to spend, and we hook you up with the perfect clothes for your situation,” said Bishop.
Bishop hopes the future of Refresh Clothing holds opportunities for franchising. He is starting with plans for a marketing campaign to create more diversity for his inventory and create a larger draw to the store’s current location. He has taken part in REV’s BIZ 1.0 workshop and is currently enrolled in CO.STARTERS, Create Birmingham‘s 10-week program on which REV is proud to partner, to help bring his franchising dreams to life.
You can follow Refresh Clothing on Facebook and Instagram to see photos of Bishop’s newest styles or see them for yourself in-store. And, on your way out, look forward to Bishop’s signature send-off – “Dress you later!”
Refresh Clothing is located at 2247 Bessemer Road, Birmingham, AL 35208.
On Saturday, November 23, five Big Pitch finalists will vie for a share of $50,000 in cash and professional services prize packages, as they pitch their business models to a panel of judges, potential investors, and a live audience.
This fall, the REV team is doing some new REV things, with a demonstration project designed to prove and improve downtown Birmingham’s market for more retail.