Oh, hey there! If we haven’t already met, let me introduce myself. I’m Emily Miller, the proud owner of a new online Christian clothing store for women that I like to call Verb Boutique. And now, I’m also the author of its corresponding Christian lifestyle blog, Verb Journal. I had about four articles written and ready to post, but—per usual—I tend to get a little ahead of myself. So before I get to going let’s have a proper introduction, shall we?
The first and most important thing you should know about me (and may have already realized from the content I create) is that I’m a straight up Jesus freak. Yep. The one you’ve been warned about. I think that designation so smoothly sung by DC Talk in the 90s is especially appropriate since Bible reading and believing seems rare even among Christians nowadays. Other than being a fervent follower of Christ, you could also call me a “creative”. As far as artsy endeavors go, I’m invested in a few. Painting? Hand lettering? Photography? Sign me up!
Fast facts about me
- Age: 33
- Single or Married: Married (For 10 years (!) in August to my husband, Jason.)
- Cat or dog person: Cat (Cat person. I have a black cat named Bella, she’s cranky but cute.)
- Favorite color: Pink (Rose gold is overrated. Said me never.)
- Favorite food: Corned beef (With a side of delicious fluffy horseradish sauce.)
- Early to rise or late to bed: Early to rise (But let’s chat after coffee, deal?)
- Favorite season: Fall (Bring on the boots! And cider. And doughnuts. And changing leaves. What’s not to love? )
- First job I ever wanted to do: Brain surgeon (Until I passed out when I got my blood drawn for the first time.)
- A trip I want to take but haven’t: New Zealand or maybe Bora Bora
An idea is planted
Verb Boutique officially entered the earth as a Christian clothing store for women at the end of 2019. However, the idea was conceived sometime before 2012. Which reminds me of one more important fact you should know about me. I love to travel. Like, I’m pretty sure I could go somewhere new every day of my life and still enjoy exploring. One of the places that prominently stands out from my journeys is Waynesville, North Carolina. Guys. I seriously love that place. My husband and I were fortunate enough to rent a friend’s cabin in the Smoky Mountains on a few different occasions. If you want to find a place for peace, this is it. The air. The views. I haven’t been back in years and I miss it.
Like the majority of places my husband and I visit, we always make at least one trip downtown. We both enjoy trying new coffee shops and restaurants and I—avid shopper that I am—like to peruse the carefully curated boutiques. I can’t remember the name of the shop now, but I distinctly remember frequenting one boutique in particular. “Curating a cute shop seems like so much fun!” I would think this as I meandered through the store. “I wonder what it would be like to have a boutique.” The idea prompted me enough to consult Google as soon as I got back to the cabin.
How to start a boutique. The query was simple and it started my quest.
Over the edge — a faith-based boutique is born
Why am I not satisfied? Despite the increased desire to start something creative of my own, I continued to clock in at my corporate job. My assignments are enjoyable. My coworkers are likable. So why do I feel like something is missing? I would spend my hours at work pondering these issues and simultaneously daydreaming at my desk about starting a boutique. (I may or may not have created my first business name and logo idea during this time.) Like many people who feel unfulfilled, I decided to make a move. More money and a better title fix any issue. Right? So, I jumped from one corporate rung to another and I got exactly what I wanted. Well, kind of. I got a bigger paycheck. I got a better title. But I didn’t get any more content. I still woke up unexcited about my day. And actually, I woke up with even more anxiety in my stomach.
During this time, my calling did become a little more clear. As I continued the corporate hustle I eventually got the opportunity to work in a ministry related capacity. I barely brought home any money, but for the first time I felt fulfilled in my work. Why? I was creating Christ-centered content. And I felt like I was impacting eternity. I realized I didn’t necessarily have the marketing part wrong, I was just missing passion for the mission. Plus, others in my family had been called to ministry, so it kind of made sense.
Can I really do this? This was the primary question that continued to quench my excitement about starting a Christian clothing store. The second was a statement. I have no idea how to do this. The recipe that finally pushed me over the edge was a dose of inspiration from other women entrepreneurs and a (very) generous sprinkling of from my faith knowing that I would have success in anything I submitted to the Lord (Proverbs 16:3). With that in mind, the decision was made—it was time to take action. Verb Boutique officially began at the end of 2019.
What’s in the name?
Where did the name Verb Boutique come from? If there’s one question business owners get asked the most, it’s how they settled on their business name. When I first began weighing options for my faith-based boutique, Verb made my list simply because it sounded punchy. As I began to really think about the mission of the store, and how I wanted to inspire action in other women, my mind began to light up with ideas. Verbs are all action words. As I continued to mull over my boutique name ideas, I felt like Verb Boutique was speaking directly to me. Not only did I want to inspire action in others, but I needed to take action myself. It was time for me to move forward. With that in mind, Verb Boutique got its name.
Bumps along the way
Can I let you in on a secret? Well, it’s not really a secret. Verb Boutique almost ceased to exist in 2020. I got distracted. I got deceived. I almost got taken out. (I’ll tell you more about that later.) We all make mistakes. I’m sharing this with you because your journey does not have to be flawless. From the outside looking in, starting a business may look glamorous. It may even seem easy. No matter which path you are pursuing, you will encounter obstacles. I just want to let you know that as long as you continue to get up and move forward, you’re doing just fine.
Which leads me to one more thing I want to be very clear about. I am not writing a Christian lifestyle blog for women because I have everything figured out. I did not start a faith-based boutique because I have arrived. I have the same struggles as any other human being. I still ask myself the question, can I really do this, more than I care to admit. I’m still recovering from deep-seated rejection and anxiety issues. I started Verb Boutique and Verb Journal to share what I’ve learned and what I continue to learn along the way. I started Verb Journal as a means of healing for myself and ideally a place of hope for others.
So If you’re a woman who wants to live more fully but often struggles with self-doubt and striving—you’re in the right spot.
To the woman who wants to live a life of purpose and passion but feels stuck. I get you.
To the woman who wonders if she will ever break free from anxiety. I understand you.
To the woman who has ever questioned whether or not she really has what it takes. I am you.
We could each face these obstacles alone or we can tackle them together. Will you join me?