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Community Highlights: Meet Riley Herington of re.find Off Main

Today we’d like to introduce you to Riley Herington.

Hi Riley, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start maybe you can share some of your backstory with our readers?
Main was established in March of 2019 and is a retail space made up of collected pieces for your home and wardrobe – which makes for a truly unique shopping experience! I have spent years curating our collection and continue to search for goods from the most unique places to ensure that our customers are getting something truly special. The traveling that comes with this search has to be my favorite part of the job. I fly to different states around the country, rent a U-Haul, fill it up and then we drive everything back to the storefront. Of course, always make stops along the way, so our truck is overflowing by the time we get home. I have found that each state offers something completely different from the next and the goods we find reflect the individuality demonstrated in each place. re.find does not just stop at the storefront; we also have a backyard space, which is filled with oddities. The space is also utilized for our Second Saturday Markets. Our Markets are from 11-3 in the yard and showcase local venders and their curated and handmade items. This is the best way for us to be able to give back to the community and help other local artists and businesses promote themselves.

As for me, I grew up in Vista, went away for college and returned to invest in myself and my community. I graduated from Vista High School in 2013 and while I did go away to UC Davis for my Bachelors, I came home to get my Masters from CSU Fullerton. With little experience in both business and retail, the initial idea to open my own store was a risk in itself. I was an HR personnel working 9-5 at a huge company with thousands of employees- how scary it was to leave that for a job in which I am the only employee fulfilling all the duties necessary to run a business. And every day since I made that decision, I am faced with the choice of taking a risk, and each time my answer is always the same: yes! Whether it be making the choice to scrape up eight layers of linoleum during renovations or renting a U-Haul and driving to the other side of the country to buy inventory, I have always been satisfied with the outcome and proud I made the choice to say yes.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
I would not describe the journey to get here and the journey that lies ahead as easy. There were many times where I wanted to give up, throw in the towel, and just be done. After graduating with my Master’s degree in December of 2018, I was still unsure of my career path. Owning my own business had always been a thought in the back of my head, but nothing I had the confidence to actually pursue. It is through my parents’ belief in me and my work ethic that I eventually decided to push the excuses away and take the next step in making my dreams reality. Most people tend to stray away from risks, but I prefer to take them every chance I get because risks, when taken seriously, supply an abundance of growth opportunities regardless if the outcome is negative or positive. You see, if you take a risk and end up succeeding, you walk away with a much higher reward than what you would have received if you acted conservatively.

The lesson here is that, yes, you might fall when taking risks, but you also might end up even better off than you were before. You are shown the value in making an investment into something with a worthwhile payoff. On the other hand, taking risks can result in failure, which, in my eyes, leads to greater confidence and resilience to try again. This goes hand in hand with the idea that failure teaches you why your current approach to achieving a goal doesn’t work and how to adjust your approach to elicit a more effective result. Yes, risks are uncomfortable and scary, but they hold value far beyond reward or embarrassment.

Nevertheless, in January of 2019, less than a month after graduating, I signed a lease on my building. I’ll admit my heart sank a bit when I realized how much love the place needed. It was built back in the 50’s as Vista’s original Greyhound Bus station. But the adventure in renovating the space and making it my own has grown to one of my greatest professional accomplishments. In school, I was not taught how to obtain a business license, how to grow a brand, how to start something from scratch. All of that is learned by doing and asking questions. Luckily Kevin Ham, the Economic Development Director of Vista, took time out of his busy schedule to act as mentor for me and lead me down a path of success.

I also had an amazing support system, which consists of my family and friends. This list of friends and family has grown to include my customers, most of whom I have established very rich relationships with. It is because of this support system that no obstacle is too big and no victory is too little. I would also like to credit my support system for teaching me that it’s okay to ask for help, it’s okay to feel like you’re failing, it’s okay to want to give up, but the most important thing is that you keep going. I have learned more than I ever thought I could, and I am happy to have a career in which I continue to learn something new every day. But the best part to me is what’s yet to come. This is just the beginning of my entrepreneurial journey! As a young business owner, I have to credit my success to continually taking risks. Risks define where we end up in life, and I am thankful I chose (and continue to choose) to take them because I am so happy with where I am at now. Every single day, I learn something new about myself, my business, my community. My focus right now is how to be a better businesswoman and build my network – everything else comes secondary. And I know I won’t achieve these goals without taking risks.

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know?
Collected goods from all over the world for your home and wardrobe! I travel all over the United States, collecting the best of the best to bring back to our little store in Vista! We have everything from clothes, shoes, home goods, home furnishings, cowhide rugs, bull skulls, dough bowls and other wood items from Europe. You want it, we probably have it!

Contact Info:

  • Email: refindvista@gmail.com
  • Website: www.refindoffmain.com
  • Instagram@re.findoffmain
  • Facebook: @re.findoffmain

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