Alabama Digital News

Alabama small business owners see hope as crowds return

Corinna Davis decided to bet on herself when she opened her clothing and gifts shop Rooster and the Rose in Montgomery earlier this year.

Corinna Davis decided to take a leap of faith.

With her husband’s encouragement, Davis doubled down on a longtime hobby and opened her own local clothing and gifts shop in Montgomery earlier this year. She decided to name her place Rooster and the Rose — the nicknames she and her husband called each other back when they were high school sweethearts.

No one would mistake it for a chain store. The Peppertree Shopping Center boutique is cozy, and the selection of women’s apparel, jewelry, candles, bags and “anything trendy” is more curated than exhaustive. But a steady parade of shoppers came in this week to explore the small space and ask questions. Davis said she already knows many of them by name, and that experience offers a different kind of appeal.

“If you go into a big box store you’re not going to be able to get that personal service,” Davis said. “There’s lots of times that I cry on people’s shoulders and they cry on my shoulder. I’m serious. We can witness and socialize with each other.”

Rooster and the Rose at 8113 Vaughn Road in Montgomery stocks a range of fashion and gifts curated by owner Corinna Davis.

Small business owners such as Davis who bet on themselves and were able to weather the pandemic may see a new day dawning, long before this weekend’s traditional Small Business Saturday.

The National Retail Federation expects about two million more people to shop over the weekend this year, and Alabama’s shopping rush could outpace that. Statewide sales through September jumped 18.3% over 2020 and were on pace for double-digit percentage growth through the holidays, the Alabama Retail Association said.

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