In the spirit of Valentine’s Day this month, we want to celebrate and recognize couples who work together in business everyday.
Meet Joelle and Jeff Cooling from Joelle’s and Jeff’s Guyshop!
- How did you both meet?
We actually met at a mutual friend’s birthday dinner – at a restaurant in Downtown Burlington that used to be on Brant Street – Sonzi.
- Why did you start working/open your business together?
We met in 1998, married in 2000 at St. Luke’s Church followed by our reception at The Water Street Cooker. We added Jeff’s Guyshop to Joelle’s in 2004. Jeff had taken 2 paternity leaves from Coca Cola when we had our boys in 2002 and 2003 (yes – they are 13 months apart). While on leave the idea for Jeff’s Guyshop was born!
3. Tell us a little bit about yourselves and your business. (i.e. What is your unique offering?)
Joelle’s and Jeff’s Guyshop offer the ultimate shopping experience in Southern Ontario. With a reputation for making premium denim shopping easy, they have become a one stop shop for all your fashion needs – from casual to career to dressy! Also offered is a well edited selection of shoes and accessories to complete the package. With a great mix of price points, you are not likely to walk away empty handed. Shopping at Joelle’s is like walking into a great big closet, colour coordinated to make wardrobe selection easy. Jeff’s Guyshop focuses on providing “sensible style” for guys who want an easy, no pressure shopping environment.
- When did you open your business in Downtown Burlington?
Joelle’s was opened in 1996. As mentioned, Jeff’s Guyshop was added in 2004.
- What made you choose Downtown Burlington?
Joelle had worked for both Scrivener’s and the Oyster in Downtown Burlington prior to opening the store. Ironically, Jeff was born and raised in Downtown Burlington!
- What other downtown businesses do you frequent and do business with?
Royal Bank, Dr. Yim (dentist), Clarity Health (naturopath), Dr Hansen (optometrist), Specs on Pearl, Kelly’s Bake Shoppe, Salon Red, Body Language, YourTAN, Martini House, Burro, Tamp, Culaccino, Waterstreet Cooker (we had our wedding there!). We do as much as we can downtown!
- If you had a piece of advice for other couples starting a business together, to help them succeed, what would it be?
Be sure to have your own time and interests, outside of the business.
- Do you have any Valentine’s Day traditions?
Usually one of us is at a trade show the week of Valentine’s Day so we really enjoy cooking a dinner at home together as a family. But now that our boys both have girlfriends, we will likely get a quiet dinner to ourselves!