Sophia Amoruso leads a life us mere mortals could only dream of. A multi-million Dollar fashion empire, check, a best-selling book and another one in the pipeline, check, a Netflix series, check – is there something she HASN’T accomplished?
Impressive though her life seems now, the ultimate #GIRLBOSS started from the bottom, just like you and me. She went from being strapped for cash to owning one of the biggest fashion empires to have ever existed. But boy, was it hard! As Amoruso reveals in her motivational best-seller, #GIRLBOSS, “I figured it out on my own.
Nasty Gal has gotten a lot of press, but it’s often spun like a fairytale.” Whilst working as a safety host at an art university in San Francisco, Amoruso launched an ebay page selling unique used items she had found in her area called Nasty Gal Vintage. She was dedicated and passionate about her newly launched store, and she did everything from source the pieces from her local thrift stores, to organizing and taking shots for the photoshoots. Two years after the store’s launch, she moved it to its own site, ensuring its firm place as an online shopping destination.
From that moment forward, the company expanded enormously – going from one employee to 110 in a very short space of time. With the help of the new team, and also a $49 million worth of investment throughout 2012, the site became the online boutique we know and love today. By 2014, it had opened its first brick and mortar store in Los Angeles in Melrose Avenue. Though Sophia Amoruso admits she has been very fortunate to have made a success of Nasty Gal, she likes to remind the press, and Nasty Gal fans, that it was not overnight. Pure hard work, motivation and mistakes allowed the site to be what it is now.
Everyone has been curious about the mastermind behind Nasty Gal, and publishing opportunities have even presented themselves to Sophia Amoruso, with the publication of her autobiography, #GIRLBOSS, in 2014.
Her brutally honest, and funny insight into the fashion industry and the creation of her business made it a huge success. She didn’t sugarcoat things, she described the fast-paced industry realistically, and that is what stuck with her fans. Her sassy and unapologetic attitude is empowering ambitious women all over the world. In 2016, it was announced that the book would be the inspiration for a series based “loosely” on Sophia Amoruso’s life, also called Girlboss. Starring Britt Robertson, the series focused on, according to the actress, “the best parts of her … then beefed the series up for entertainment purposes so it’s a comedy”.
Though it received harsh criticism, Sophia Amoruso’s unapologetic attitude shone through yet again, and responded to comments with “While I’m proud of the work we did, I’m looking forward to controlling my narrative from here on out… living my life as a caricature was hard even if it only for two months. It will be nice to someday tell the story of what’s happened in the last few years. People read the headline, not the correction, I’ve learned.”
Despite the fact that Nasty Gal filed for bankruptcy in 2016, Sophia has other ventures that we can’t wait to discover. Following the purchase of Nasty Gal by the British retailer, BooHoo, Sophia created her own community, Girlboss Media, meant to inspire and create a support network for women everywhere. It covers every subject possible – work, money, wellness, beauty, life and also features portraits of inspirational women. It is THE website for feminists! Though the press are skeptical of Amoruso’s new venture following the fall of Nasty Gal, she responded, “Every decision that you make becomes something you live out for the next year or years or decade. In the beginning, you’re not burdened by the legacy of your technology or a department.
Whatever you created you’re really in a place of pure invention in a way and that’s the best part.” The downward spiral of Nasty Gal shaped her into the new woman she is today, and that new woman gave us Girlboss Media. Sometimes, you just have to find yourself. Sophia’s mom couldn’t have said it better herself.