Main Street Clothing Co. is not only a staple for retail shopping on the 200 Block of Victoria street, it is a legacy which is long lived and has no plans of stopping anytime soon. Store owner Nicki confesses that Main Street has been a vision for practically her entire life. “I have loved fashion since I was a little girl,” she confesses, “I mean, I always have. It was the dream that I had and it still drives me to this day.” This drive which Nicki raves about has evolved into a career in fashion of 35 years and her store, Main Street, which is celebrating its 17th year of business.
Nicki’s inspiration for Main Street began with a handful of mentors. Giving Nicki the confidence and muse which is necessary in fashion retail, she now aspires to be a mentor for her daughters who are learning the ropes of running the institution that is Main Street. “This is a family business” explains Nicki, making Main Street a true legacy. Something that is important to Nicki is to maintain the values which her store holds. “I always tell the girls, at the end of the day selling is your job… but if you do your job right you’re not selling, you’re taking care of your customer and the rest is just a bonus.” Nicki says that the responsibility of running Main Street teaches life skills such as respect for people, among other things. This is an aspect of the job that is valuable both in the workplace and in her personal life. Her beliefs of genuine service and a strong customer-merchant relationship are reflective of the ambiance which Downtown Kamloops is all about: precisely why Nicki has chosen to locate her store here!
“Downtown is the heart of the city, where everything grows! It’s a community within a city, in my experience.” Nicki insists that she would never want to run her store anywhere else. “Malls have their place, but I personally wouldn’t [work]
in a mall again.” Nicki describes the level of
competitiveness that she felt while working in a mall, and she feels that downtown works together to help one another thrive. “I am a community person; I am a Kamloops girl. I love that I can look outside and see customers and go out and talk to them in a warmer environment. Sometimes they’ll just come because they just need a Main Street fix! They aren’t necessarily looking for something and we love that there is no pressure to buy anything.” Service certainly comes first for Nicki and this is one of the key reasons that her store has always been and will continue to be a local favourite.
Nicki has learned a lot through her mentors and the process of teaching her daughters but she insists that she isn’t and will never be finished broadening her expertise. “You can always improve for your customers. You can always improve for your business and you can always grow. I never say that I am perfect, either. I always just want to keep the bar high and give more to my customers. The day I retire will be a sad one.” We agree, Nicki! From dreaming of Main Street in her youth to dreading retirement in the future, Nicki is the ideal shop owner and Main Street is the quintessential store for the Downtown Kamloops core.