How She Built This

I am a podcast junkie. It all started with the one that we all know, How I Built This. I find it fascinating to hear about the different paths people take to build their businesses. I mean, the most interesting part isn’t the product; it is the story. My all-time favorite one is the story of Chicken Salad Chick. Here is the link and trust me when I tell you, it will leave you inspired and in tears. The founder, Stacy Brown, is remarkable, and her journey is a testament to not giving up and having a lot of determination and hustle.

It got me thinking – the reason I think all the businesses in Alexandria are so great is not really because of what they do. It is because of the people who started them and that thing that clicked in their head and made them decide to go for it. The who and the why combined is where the magic happens.

As we planned our Powered by Women event, we wanted to make sure you knew a little more about all of us and how we built our businesses so, we created a video series. I was asking the questions off camera and I admit, I am no Guy Raz, but it was such a rewarding few days. Even though I know most of these women very well, I didn’t know all of their stories. This is a remarkable group of women and we didn’t even hear from everyone! We will have to do a second edition. Can I also say: does Phyllis Patterson not look amazing? We might need a series on how you raise four remarkable kids, build a thriving business, give time to your community, and look so dang good!

The last nine days, you have seen lots of us posting videos from our “How She Built This” series to help launch our Powered by Women Passport. Starting today, if you are one of the first 100 people to support (that means “buy something”) at 10 of the businesses listed on the map and receive a sticker, you will receive a custom bag filled with goodies.

You can pick up your bag at Boxwood at 128 South Royal.

This event isn’t just about the passport over the next 10 days. We are also having a Powered by Women Live series on Instagram (@alxstylebook) as well. Every day, we will feature an Alexandria Stylebook business owner teaching us about a skill or expertise her business has to offer. Alexandria Stylebook isn’t just about shopping – it is about living and learning.

We hope you have enjoyed this series. Don’t forget to tag us at @alxstylebook as you shop, dine, and learn. And thank you for supporting all of our businesses throughout the years, especially this past one!


Click below to watch the videos!

How She Built This 1: Why did you decide to start a small business?
How She Built This 2: Which female entrepreneurs inspire you?
How She Built This 3: What are changes you made during the pandemic?
How She Built This 4: What advice would you give another woman starting a business?
How She Built This 5: What was harder about your business than you thought it would be?
How She Built This 6: What are changes you made after starting your business?
How She Built This 7: What was the best business advice you have been given?
How She Built This 8: What was your first year in business like?
How She Built This 9: What is special about the Alexandria business community?



  • The latest from Elizabeth
I spent the first part of my career as a copy-writer who helped elected officials brag about their support for entrepreneurs. Then I decided to get off the printed page and do it myself. The Shoe Hive made a splash on the fashion scene in Washington, and was named the region’s best shoe store in its first year. Fourteen years later, I have tripled the store’s size and also opened a sister store, The Hive. At The Hive, we offer clothing lines that are sophisticated and approachable like Rag & Bone, Tibi, Raquel Allegra, Ulla Johnson and Veronica Beard. We have tried to fill our racks with clothing you will want to wear all the time, elevated basics that are worth the investment.

Heard the buzz? The Shoe Hive & The Hive are a pair of luxury boutiques in Old Town Alexandria. Featuring both big name designers like Rag & Bone and Stuart Weitzman and smaller brands like AGL and L'Agence, our unique selection and impeccable service are what set us apart.

The Shoe Hive                         The Hive
127 S. Fairfax Street               301 Cameron Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
              Alexandria, VA 22314

703.548.7105                          703.548.7110

1 Comment

  1. Avatar Margaret O'Meara says:

    Loved this series, Elizabeth! I hope to see it again!

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