BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Courtney Nelson-Benton is helping residents of the Queen City making their living spaces more lovable.
Nelson-Benton just opened her first brick-and-mortar location for her business, Elle James Decor, at 1856 Hertel Ave.
The boutique sells carefully curated home goods and items like hand-wrapped sage, incense, and candles.
“I’ve always loved home decor, and interior design has really been a passion of mine ever since college,” Nelson-Benton said. “I think some of that comes from my psychology and counseling background- the things that surround us really affect our moods.”
Nelson-Benton started her business about three years ago, selling custom-made wreaths and selling them at artisan fairs and festivals.
“But people aren’t walking around buying huge door wreaths- they’re looking for smaller things,” Nelson-Benton explained. “So I started thinking of other things I could provide people with- sage, incense, anything that would really help people to bring positive energy into their space.”
The name “Elle James” comes from Nelson-Benton’s middle name, Ellsworth, and her son’s name.
“Raising a young boy in this type of climate, I think it’s so important to show him how he can make his own money and how he can build wealth for himself,” Nelson-Benton added.
She’s a resident of the neighborhood where she opened her brick-and-mortar location.
“I wanted to bring something into the neighborhood that I would want myself,” Nelson-Benton said. “People can walk right in here, and you don’t have to think about waiting in long lines or going to big department stores- you can shop right in your neighborhood.”
The response has been great so far- and Nelson-Benton says she plans on paying it forward by inviting other women entrepreneurs sell their items at the shop during pop-up events.
“I can provide advice and assistance and help guide them, so they can someday own their own shop too,” Nelson-Benton added.
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