Earlier this summer, Tara Paige visited a Kirkland’s in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. She was searching for a specific stool, one that had received thousands of comments in the online community she created during the pandemic, “Black Women Who Love Outdoor Spaces.” When she came up empty, a cashier told her the stool had been sold out nationwide because of “some Facebook Group.”
“That was me!” Paige said. After a similar stool sold out at Michaels and a floating wine glass flew off the shelves, it was clear: she hadn’t just created a safe space online, she’d created a force.
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Being inspired by her parent’s beautiful and immaculate front and back yards, as well as the Black Women Who Love Outdoor Living Spaces Facebook group Gail decided she was going to transform her patio space. Click my Linkin.bio to read the full story behind Gail Boyd’s inspiration for her patio.
That wasn’t exactly the intention, though. The Facebook Group, formed in late April, was ultimately the result of a pandemic home improvement project — Paige decided to redesign the outdoor living spaces of her family’s new home.
“When I started looking for inspiration for outdoor living spaces, I looked at all the big name personalities and there was not an African American in that space. I really wanted to find people that looked like me,” Paige tells PaperCity. “My mother always told me, if you don’t find what you’re looking for, create it. So that’s what I did.”
She didn’t have a strategy for growing her group. She invited a few friends, who invited a few more, and the requests quickly started organically pouring in. Today, the closed community has more than 190,000 members, with 118,000 in cue.
“I just wanted to connect with other women that looked like me,” Paige says. “The growth was truly organic. It was word of mouth. And it just kind of let me know that people really wanted this.”
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Expanding the Space
The formation of “Black Women Who Love Outdoor Spaces,” may have been a whim, but the group undoubtedly had spending power, and Paige clearly had a knack for galvanizing. The logical, entrepreneurial next move: lifestyle brand.
This summer, Paige launched The Patio Chic, an outdoor living brand backed by her incredible online community. There are t-shirts, wine tumblers, blog posts with before-and-afters, and a Youtube series called “Tour de Patio,” where followers from across the country share their inspiring outdoor spaces, along with a shared love of escaping to a well-appointed patio during this unprecedented time. And though the brand is inclusive of all backgrounds, Paige decided to keep the Facebook Group an exclusive community for Black women.
“The purpose is just to create the space, because with everything going on right now, I think Black women just need a place to heal,” Paige says. “I didn’t realize that’s what I was creating.”