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Making dreams come true: UT student Gabby Tarbuck opens an online boutique


Nearly everyone loves shopping – whether you prefer to do it online or in person. Local boutiques are the perfect spots to find gameday outfits, but sometimes finding clothes online is the preferred option. 

Many people dream of starting their own businesses like these, whether in person or online, and Gabby Tarbuck, student at the University of Tennessee, is living this dream.

Since her senior year of high school, Tarbuck has been wanting to open her own business, and she recently launched an online fashion boutique: South Babes Boutique. 

“I’ve always had a passion for fashion, and I love to shop. So, to have a job where I get to shop for a living (is) the best of both worlds,” Tarbuck said. 

There are many benefits to being an online boutique owner. It provides a gateway for self-expression through the style of products sold. Also, it is easy to keep items at an affordable cost. 

Being able to provide high-quality items for a low price while still making a profit is a great way to operate a business. This allows the products to be available to many people while also ensuring the business will stay running.

Opening an online boutique is a fun hobby or way to make a living, but it also has its challenges. Tarbuck tells about her biggest challenge along her journey: her fear of failure. 

“I was so scared of failure that I almost completely bagged the idea. I couldn’t get my mind to stop thinking about all the negative ‘what ifs,’” Tarbuck said. 

The fear of failure is a common challenge in starting an online business. What if customers do not like the products? What if there is no profit made? What happens if you fail? After facing this challenge herself, Tarbuck gives advice about overcoming these challenges. 

“I was able to get past these negative thoughts and think about the positive ‘what ifs.’ You will never know how something will go until you try it,” Tarbuck said. 

These challenges should not scare away anyone interested in opening their own boutique, however. Tarbuck gives advice to those who are wishing to start their dream but are too nervous to start. 

“My biggest piece of advice for anyone who wants to start a boutique is to just go for it. Don’t let your fears control you,” Tarbuck said.

Tarbuck doubted her knowledge and abilities for many years before beginning her business. She is now the owner of her own successful online boutique, and she is willing to help those that are up and coming in the same field. 

“To anyone who needs to chat about the process of opening (a boutique,) please don’t hesitate to contact me. I can be reached through my store’s Instagram … I would love to help out in any way,” Tarbuck said. 

Although she still faces challenges, Tarbuck continues to grow in her business each and every day. She has come a long way already through her hard work and dedication, and she will continue to grow for many years to come. 
Click here to go to Tarbuck store, South Babes Boutique.