An Interview with popular thrifting small business Twicebutnice.
“Buy Less, choose well, and make it last.” – Vivienne Westwood, modern fashion designer
First established in early 2021, Twicebutnice is a business that sells second-hand clothing articles to progressive clients. This enterprise became popular after it offered style bundles tailored to each client.
Twicebutnice tries to combat the stigma of thrifted items and shows that second handle clothing is more than a cheap fashion alternative. It is an exotic style and a way to save the environment.
Who Runs Twicebutnice?
Meet Mouna, 21 years old, and a recent college graduate who is focusing on her small business full-time.
Since childhood, she would often go with her mother to thrift and spot hidden gems. Due to her upbringing, Mouna knows Casabarata (A popular market for used items) by heart and has her secret spots for sourcing unique clothing articles (with the occasional bartering of course.).
How Did Twicebutnice Come to Be?
Like many, Mouna started to seriously consider starting her own small business during the pandemic lockdown. She saw the rise of E-commerce in Morocco and wanted to try it out for herself.
Although Mouna was burdened with college, She managed to monetize her passion and utilize her discerning taste to pursue a fulfilling career that funded her lifestyle and dreams.
What Were Some of The Obstacles You Faced When Starting Twicebutnice?
Mouna felt frustrated by the initial wave of judgment she would receive. A small part of it was due to her initial low following count and young business age (seriously, early businesses receive a fire wave of bullying and belittling).
However, a large part of it is due to what the common person associates with thrifting items.
“I would often have clients tell me: ‘How dare you price this item for X amount? I can find it for cheaper elsewhere!’ I understand where they are coming from, but a lot of them do not see the efforts we do behind the scenes.”
She highlighted the different costs and processes she goes through when preparing an item. Costs like travel, laundry, ironing, buying props for photos, packaging, marketing, etc.
How Were The Early Days of Your Business?
“I honestly wasn’t that active during the early days of Twicebutnice. I did a lot of waiting.”
Mouna clarified that Twicebutnice was conceptualized during the 2020 quarantine and officially launched on January 2021 (when the quarantine was lifted).
“My early days were nice […] I bought some corsets for launch and I was very surprised to get an order on the first day of going live! It gave me a lot of hope about my business.”
Luckily, Mouna was blessed by receiving her first order on her first day. Milestones like these can motivate ambitious young entrepreneurs to continue on their path.
“After my first sale, I did not celebrate. I started with low expectations and after that first order, I was shocked that people saw value in what I do! […] I started taking it more seriously.”
One of the aspects Mouna leveraged her account was by building solid relations with customers and interacting with followers through social media. Things like instantly replying to DMs, answering polls, or seeking feedback, She relied on loyal customers and appealed to them rather than everyone.
Is Twicebutnice profitable? When did it start being profitable?
“In all honesty, Twiceisnice became sustainable after my second month of operations.”
As mentioned in my small business guide, I highlighted that most businesses do not see overnight success. It will take a couple of months to start seeing profits, and Mouna’s case was the same.
“The real milestone was during my eighth month when style bundles were launched. They were a game-changer for me […] Twicebutnice helped me through my academic journey, it covered all my bills so I was never financially worried about rent and food, and that mattered a lot as a college student.”
How Often Do You Thrift?
Mouna’s thrifting schedule was not constant. She would often change the weekly trips depending on her studies and classes. Moreover, during the early days of Twicebutnice, she would only thrift per client’s needs and specifications.
“When I was a student, I used to thrift twice a week (nice pun) since studies kept me busy all the time. After graduating and offering style bundles, I currently thirft at least three times a week.”
What Do You Usually Do After Thrifting?
After sourcing her main products, Mouna does strict quality control and sorting. She would check for tears that needed stitches, group similar styled clothes, and research the origin of each item.
“After thrifting, I organize myself and my schedule, wash and iron every article, plan drops, and build the style bundles.”
Can You Define Your Ideal Audience and How Do You Attract Them?
“The ideal audience for me are non-judgy people. I post a lot of things that some clients will not see the value in them. I want them to understand that each person has their own style and maybe this specific item isn’t your thing and that’s fine!”
Another thing discussed in the previous small business guide (Man do I reference it a lot) was understanding your audience. For Mouna, she has been doing this for more than a year and a half.
She is in tune with her audience and can often predict what they will like during her thrifting trips. Additionally, she realizes that a loyal audience is an essential pillar of any business.
“I try to provide a diverse fashion environment for my followers. I always add text with every image posted to indicate what style is this piece suitable for.”
Through the effort of her work and social media interaction, Mouna manages to attract the ideal audience who will appreciate her sense of fashion and be willing to pay for her products.
“I keep a professional and relatable tone on my social media. It’s just enough casual to be approached by people via DMs, and just professional enough to be respected.”
How do you build your style bundles?
When Mouna was explaining her process of creating a style bundle, I noticed the emphasis was on client needs. As a business your sole purpose is to serve the customer, so all your efforts should understand them and provide what they desire.
The typical process would begin with what the client wants, ask for inspiration, and learn their taste. Then, she would learn their preferences, dislikes, and restrictions to properly thrift for them.
“I make sure that what they get fits them and comfortable with it. Some prefer certain sizes and colors, others only wear long skirts, while some wear a Hijab. I try to match what the client sent, but If I can’t I try to find something closely related to it.”
What Is Your Biggest Achievement With Twicebutnice?
“My biggest achievement was creating the style bundles. I noticed that it was a thing abroad but not in Morocco. I discussed it with some friends and the rest is history. At the moment, I think Twicebutnice is the only business that offers style bundles.”
Another factor that helped Twicebutnice succeed was her specialty. Mouna could have been a typical thrift shop with respectable success. However, thanks to her creativity and entrepreneurship, She created a successful concept that made her business stand out from others.
When broken down, We can easily understand why style bundles work. The average client of thrift shops is stylish and desires a piece of clothing that matches their aesthetic.
Twicebutnice fulfills this desire by simplifying this process and removing the struggle of thrifting, which comes with the annoyance of not finding the desired pieces.
What is Your Latest Obsession?
“I am a person whose obsessions quickly change. I would love something for two days then move on to something new, so I can’t tell you exactly!”
I’ll settle for the last show/anime/movie you watched.
“I’m currently watching Lucifer, I love his personality development and how he blends with humans. You know, actually learning how to express especially love.”
Anything Else You Want to Share?
“I forgot to mention, my shop is for everyone. Most of my items are unisex this includes the bundles as well. I make them based on characters from anime, series, and movies.”
What Can We Learn?
Twicebutnice is a shining example of what it means to analyze client needs as a business and provide them with simple direct solutions. Through the way she interacts with her audience on social media and how she markets; customers feel appreciated and heard which in turn translates to more purchases.
As a business, you should always strive to provide the best customer experience. Just by listening to critique and processing data, You can craft a new methodology that your audience will enjoy.
Who knows? You might be one idea short of the next style bundle! After all, recycling ideas is not a bad idea.