The auction block

by Amanda Bedgood

How one Lafayette retailer is changing the way we buy.

This isn't Gina Babineaux's first rodeo. The Artesia veteran knows a thing or two about sales. And so, when she began a new endeavor we had to get the inside scoop. Gina, you see, is selling things in a way we've never seen around these parts (or anywhere else for that matter).
"Right now, the company features sales on Facebook as "fixed-priced" auctions or "flash sales" with a new e-commerce website and trend blog right around the corner," Gina says.
She started Loft 115 with her mother Lana Lagneaux just last week with the premise of brining celeb-inspired accessories to the mainstream. High end/low price. Okay, we're listening.

"The name is inspired by the idea of "that trendy gal living in a big-city loft on a small town budget." Upcoming collections will feature popular styles of hammered cross jewelry, Saint Benedict medal necklaces and earrings and fabulous animal pieces that are super on-trend. Item are a steal at prices ranging from $4 to $36 each," Gina says.
A steal indeed. We spotted a precious fox ring for just $4 and the crazy popular bubble necklace brought to the world by J. Crew - but, the loft 115 version is but $18. But, don't expect to stroll into the store and buy these pieces or even find them right this minute.
"Facebook auctions occur every Monday and Wednesday at 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. CST," Gina explains.
Each session includes 8 to 12 pieces for sale. To buy, comment "sold. Loft 115 emails the buyer and you pay via PayPal. The number of pieces is limited and they stay on the page until sold out. And the big bonus? Everything ships on a Monday and for free. (Free!)
So, why not just open an accessories shop or include this in the existing Artesia?
"I've wanted to get back into e-commerce for a while now. More and more people are definitely shopping online and accessories were a great way for us to ease back into that market because you don't have all of the size and fit concerns you have with selling clothing online" says Babineaux. "Facebook in itself has been gaining momentum as an online sales tool and was a great opportunity for us to start small and instantly get in the face of new customers. Once our website launches it will feature our full inventory and our Facebook site will still continue to offer great discounted items."  
While it's been less than two weeks, Gina says people are on board with the selling on Facebook.
"Items are already selling out."
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