Meet Ashley Lopez of Ixlaly's Custom Creations
I’ve always been into the whole arts and crafts thing as a kid. I was even planning to transfer to an art school, but for whatever reason I stayed put at my local high school. School and work became a priority and I placed art on the back burner.
When my little niece turned 7 I wanted her party to look cool with centerpieces instead of just the plain tables. Never having done centerpieces in my life I acted on impulse and did them. When I get an idea stuck in my head I have to do it. Everyone loved the decorations andni received a lot of compliments and suggestions to create my own Facebook page in Hope’s to book more parties.
Coming up with the name had to be the hardest, but my sister suggested Ixlaly’s which is part of my nieces name. So that’s what I went with after all she is the reason it all came about. I booked a few parties, but my page did not have much of a following to where people were seeing it. I eventually went from centerpieces, diaper cakes, hair bows, tutus, home coming mums to the shoes. I had a video go viral and my 200+ likes quickly grew to over 8,000. My orders started increasing and I was doing great.i started in 2012, but it wasnt until 2016 that I can honestly say business started booming.
In the beginning my work was not that great. Kudos to everyone who would lie to me and tell me they looked good it just kept me going and well practice makes perfect . After many failed attempts I finally got it down. Word of mouth from my customers and being able to market on social media is what had helped me to be able to make this happen.
It definitely has not been smooth sailing. There has definitely been a lot of road blocks along the way. Starting out was the hardest. I was doing something I was passionate about and selling my products online, but people tend to be a little iffy when it comes from a source they don’t know or have never heard of. I was charging very little for my products and not profiting much for the amount of work I was putting in. I was determined to get my name out there even if it meant pretty much almost free labor at the time.
When I was finally growing hurricane Harvey came through and rained on my parade, literally. With no steady place to work while our house was getting fixed despite my communication with customers there was that one customer who filed a complaint and got my online store shut down. I had to refund a lot of orders which was fine, but not sure the person realized there went one of my sources of income.
I was very unmotivated after Harvey and that loss, but I got back to it and slowly but surely I’m getting back to working on shoe orders and I have also been trying to expand and do shirts as well. Working a full time job and trying to keep your little business afloat is hard. I feel like I’m working 24/7, but I love it and I am hoping to be able to eventually focus on my little business full time soon.
Ixlaly’s Custom Creations has definitely gone through its phases. What started as a business page for party decorations went to bows, tutus, homecoming moms, diaper cakes, shoes, shirts and pretty much anything that pops in my head. I do a little bit of everything, but my main focus are the custom shoes.
I can customize on any type of shoe, but I am primarily known for my custom blinged out chucks. I am a huge sports fanatic so when I started making shoes they were sport themed to represent our local teams. Weather its sports, school, work, wedding or special occasion I try and make my customers vision a reality.
What sets me apart from others is the dedication. Every item is made by hand. I don’t just throw things together and hope it comes out okay. I take time to make sure the detail is spot on. I use authentic brand name shoes and 100% authentic swavorski Crystal’s and it shoes. Pictures don’t do the shoes justice.
What I am most proud of is how much I have grown despite the set backs. I went from just selling local to all of Texas, to throughout the United states to international! It’s pretty amazing and such a great feeling when I receive good reviews or I see my loyal customers talking good about my work.
Success to me would be reaching my goals being where I want to be business wise. I feel I have met some goals so far in trying to get my little business out there, but I am not where I want to be.
I do have my 9 to 5 full time job and then I go home and work on my little business. When I am able to take this on full time and be okay financially to where I am doing what I love every day I feel like at that point that would be success for me.
There is still a long way to go, but will reach it one day.