Tina Kastana: Today’s Notable Young Entrepreneur

Tina Kantana invested $500 in 2006 to start auctioning 10 designer clothing pieces onto eBay. She was amazed and how quickly everything sold, so she turned her love of fashion and built Fashion à la Carte on eBay Canada; she currently has over 2000 items and has sold to over 70 countries across the globe…

Elevator Pitch: Describe your business in a nutshell.
Pictures this: An online store with about 500 designer labels that consist of apparel, vintage and limited edition items. The inventory comes from throughout North America thanks to my successful road trips and posting them onto eBay’s fashionalacarte. I also resemble the girl that I shop for, therefore anything I sell is definitely my personal pick.

I invest about two hours a day working online. I also have appointments for “closet cleaning,” where I consult clients on what to consign and what to keep.

Why did you start your business, what was the inspiration?
Because I live and breathe fashion and was always savvy on the internet, I wanted to start a side project. My talent of choosing unique pieces, the minimal investment, and eBay Canada’s platform for resell is what inspired me to start this opportunity to open an online business. 

What is the best part of what you do on a day-to-day basis? The most challenging part?
Best part: Waking up every morning excited to answer buyers’ emails coming from every part of the world. I still get fascinated with every item sold that I ship out to, from New York City down to Australia. What’s captivating is that some well-known celebrities have also made purchases from the store over the past couple of years – that’s a fun part of my day!

Challenging part: As I am a one-woman show, it is always important for my customers to ensure they are satisfied with the entire experience and maintain positive store ratings. 

Where do you see your business going in five years?
Definitely to increase my inventory and created job opportunities.

What does success look like to you?
People contacting me after reading my story and letting me know that I have been an inspiration to them, that’s success to me!

What is the most memorable milestone in your career?
Being recognized by eBay Canada and winning the Fashion-preneur of the Year award in 2012!

Do you have any advice for other young professionals?
As a Certified Ebay Education Specialist for Canada, I also teach young professionals on how to build an eBay business. My advice has always been that if you have a passion for something, it will always lead to success. There’s a plethora of information online to quick start on a business; do your research and start with an active community and social networks where you don’t have to spend capital right away.

Do you support any charities? If so, which one(s) and why is that important to you?
No, not yet. I want to, and it’s time. It is very important to me to do my part and give back to the community.

What is Notable to you?
Reading Notable.ca’s young entrepreneur success stories on a weekly basis. I love a winner story, that’s notable to me.

Blackberry, iPhone, Android, or Other?
Would you believe me if I say none of the above? My laptop is enough!

How do you keep active, energetic, and vibrant?
I have a love affair with Bikram Yoga.