MY MISSION: To motivate and inspire Boss Babes in the making. To uplift, encourage, and promote male & female entrepreneurs and to share aspirations, goals and dreams with them, and you, my subscribers.
To provide and build a warm, loving, and supportive community of CREATORS. Creators of art, a business, or a NEW YOU …
In the mid 2000’s while I was studying Fashion Merchandising at VCC (Vancouver Community College), I was working part time as a receptionist at Beverly Ball Hair Design on West Esplanade in North Vancouver. It is unfortunately no longer, but when I was working there, and for as long as I can remember, I have admired the stunning dresses on display in the store front windows at Isabelle’s Bridal.
I recently featured their window displays on my Instagram and sought to find out more about the people behind Isabelle’s. The local bridal store is a perfect fit for my Babes Promoting Babes Interview Series. I am very honoured to introduce you to Kasia Bulva, one of the owners of the North Van iconic store.
M: What’s your story? Where were you born, where were you raised? What was your childhood, growing up years like?
K: I was born in Poland and lived there until I was 9 years old. I grew up in a city called Sanok with my twin sister Basia (who also happens to be my business partner). Growing up in Poland was great but it was during Communism when life was quite difficult at times. My parents decided to immigrate our family to Canada to give us an opportunity for a better life.
M: What did you want to do when you grew up?
K: I was hoping to get into advertising. I’ve always had a passion for coming up with creative ways to sell and market products. As I grew older, I developed a passion for the art of selling and excellence in customer service.
M: Did you go to college or university? If so, what did you study?
K: I went to college and studied business development.
M: When did you move to Vancouver? Why did you move to Vancouver?
K: I moved to Vancouver in 1999. I was living in Toronto at the time and came to visit BC and I was hooked! It wasn’t long after that trip that I made the decision to move here.
M: When did you start your business? What was your inspiration?
K: My business was started in 2005 under different ownership. Funny thing is, I actually came in as a bride looking to purchase a veil. The previous owners and I had an instant connection. I felt like they had been my friends for years. After going home I quickly realized I wanted to spend more time with them so I became their first employee! I became the store manager and learned many valuable aspects of the wedding industry over the 10 years spent with them.
After the fantastic 10 years the previous owners decided to change pace and close the store down which forced me to look for other employment options. Upon my search it quickly became evident that my passion was bridal and that I wanted to continue working in the industry. I then had this “it” moment! I literally sprung out of bed at 3am and said out loud to myself “I’m going to buy the store!” And I have now owned the store for 7 years.
M: What do you love the most about being a Boss Babe?
K: I love having the freedom of choosing how I spend my time and the ability to make my own business decisions.
M: What would your advice be for Boss Babes in the making? If they are contemplating leaving a secure 9-5 job with benefits – what would you say to them? Should they take the leap?
K: I would advise future Boss Babes to look within themselves and if what they are planning to do is really their passion. Running a business takes a lot of hard work and dedication. The 9 to 5 workday will not exist anymore and often you will take your work home with you in paper and emotional form.
Having said that, it is also very rewarding and exciting. Your business is your baby so you will need to make sure you do whatever it takes to make it run smoothly. Number one advice – get a very good bookkeeper!
M: Any last words? What’s our favourite positive/motivational quote or book?
K Remember to keep it fun. Stay innovative and motivated. There will be great days and there will be not so great days. Always remind yourself that this a journey of your passion, enjoy the ride! My favorite quote is, “if you love your job, you’ll never work another day in your life”.
If you would like to see more of Isabelle’s Bridal’s beautiful wedding dresses follow their Instagram and visit their website to book an in-store or virtual appointment.