Taylor Bolleber is one bad ass chick who’s not afraid to bend the rules, especially when it comes to fashion. Her new boutique, Bird Bee, mixes edgy + bohemian styles, that are attracting the eye of Detroit’s wild childs, boho babes, and “expressive and edgy souls.” With a heart of gold, a little bit of sass, and a lot of dedication, Bird Bee became Taylor’s most unexpected, crazy, and beautiful surprise. Read about her career journey and get to know her below!

{SS}: What is your current profession?

{TB}: I am the founder, owner, and buyer at Bird Bee, a women’s modern & edgy bohemian apparel and accessories store in Downtown Detroit.

{SS}: What inspired or drove you to open up your own boutique? 

{TB}: I never dreamt about opening my own boutique when I was younger, ironically I always longed for the corporate 9-5 lifestyle.I never even wanted to start a business. After attending Grand Valley State University and obtaining my bachelor of science degree in advertising & public relations, I started my job hunt. I sent out resumes all day long, filled out long job applications, had phone interview after phone interview, and nothing was happening for me. I eventually took a temporary gig working for an experiential marketing company traveling around the country doing ride & drive’s for FIAT automobiles. In each city I visited, I admired the boutiques and specialty shops and wished there were options like that back in Detroit. I’ve always loved shopping. I never had that great of a fashion sense, but it was still something I loved. After the marketing tour was over, I was back in Detroit applying and taking short-term positions and internships again until eventually I found a full time position at GTB, an advertising agency. It only took a few months for me to begin feeling uninspired and wanting more. One night, I started playing around on Instagram and created an account for what would soon become Bird Bee. It started online, and grew from there. I ended up quitting my day job 8 months later to put all of my time and effort into the business. People loved the merchandise and the entire vibe of my little shop I created, and eventually I decided I would turn it into a brick and mortar storefront. 

{SS}:  Tell us about your typical day.

{TB}: As a small business owner, each day is always different. Typically, it starts early, around 6:30am with lots of coffee. I catch up on emails, check our e-commerce site for any orders needing to be shipped out, plan our social media posts for the day and get ready to open the store. There’s never two days alike at the store. Being downtown, there is constant foot traffic and people popping in all day long between the hours of 11am and 8pm. I spend part of my day on the sales floor and part of my day processing new shipments, completing administrative work, answering calls from vendors and customers, updating the website, creating content for social media, managing my employees, and attending any meetings that may be required of me. Many days, I am at the store for hours after we close merchandising and finishing anything that didn’t get done during the day.

{SS}:  What do you love about your job?

{TB}: I honestly love everything about it, it’s my baby that I’ve watched grow into a successful full time operation, but one of my favorite things is when people walk out of the store wearing a new outfit they fell in love with.

{SS}:  What would you tell your 23-year-old self? 

{TB}: I am currently 25 and started Bird Bee as a 23 year old. I can honestly say there is nothing that I wish I knew then that I know now simply because I don’t know if I would have continued on with building the business. If I knew how hard it would be, if I knew that I would sacrifice 99% of my free time, if I knew how expensive it would be, and if I knew how stressed out I would be, I probably wouldn’t take the leap! I’m glad that I went in sort of clueless, because everything that I have learned along the way, I learned in the exact way that I needed to.

{SS}:  Advice to anyone who’s thinking about starting their own business? How do you find balance?

{TB}: My advice is, don’t always listen to everyone else’s advice. Your gut is always right, don’t ever let someone else try to convince you otherwise. Just go after what you want! Finding balance comes with time. I obviously knew I wouldn’t have much of a life at first, but I am slowly learning how to make the most of whatever free time I have and allowing myself some time for self-care.

{SS}: What are some of your favorite pieces in your store right now?

{TB}: As the buyer, this is always a tough question for me. We’re starting to get a ton of fall sweaters and jackets in which I definitely have a weakness for. I am also obsessing over a new suede point-toe sock boot we recently got in. I’ve already worn them a few times and we just got them last week!

{SS}:  Where do you get your daily news fix?

{TB}: I feel that I find any useful, need-to-know info through social media. I don’t favor most news outlets, and I also don’t read fashion magazines because Bird Bee has never really been about fashion trends and keeping up with runway styles.

{SS}:  What do you do to make you feel beautiful, confident and ready to take on anything? 

{TB}: I throw on a leather jacket, some heeled booties & dark matte lip color, and turn the music up.

{SS}:  What is your “Style Archetype?” 

{TB}: Edgy Chic. This describes me perfectly! I am definitely the “Bee” when it comes to Bird Bee.

{SS}:  Who is your Style Icon? 

{TB}: My celebrity style icon is Natalie Bergman (left) from the brother-sister duo band Wild Belle. My instagram influencer girl crush style icon is Ivana Revic (Right @ivanarevic).

Photo sources: Billboard@ivanarevic

{SS}:  What is your power outfit or accessory?

{TB}: Here we go again with the leather jacket. It’s basically glued to my body even when it is 90 degrees out.

{SS}:  Who inspires you and why? 

{TB}: My mom is literally the best boss b**** out there. She is my rock for all things Bird Bee and I could never do it without her. She’s intelligent, creative, and keeps me in check on buying trips.

{SS}:  What are YOUR “words to live by” OR favorite saying/quote? 


{SS}:  Favorite Spot for Breakfast, Lunch and or Dinner: 

{TB}: I could eat Bucharest every day, it’s quick, affordable and amazing.

{SS}:  Favorite Coffee Spot: 

{TB}: Dessert Oasis – not only because it’s a few doors down from my store, but it’s the first independent coffeehouse I’ve been to that doesn’t feel pretentious.

{SS}:  Favorite Boutique: 

{TB}: My own! The last thing I bought that wasn’t from Bird Bee was groceries.

Photo sources: Detroitdvotion / Yelp 

Shop Bird Bee on the SEEN Marketplace or at birdbee.com