Local fashion store helps spur rural movement

Lisa Baroldi, left, and Kristen Prpich, owners of Rural Fashion Girl, invite everyone to the Rural Women’s Flowers & Fashion Gala Sept. 16.
Lisa Baroldi, left, and Kristen Prpich, owners of Rural Fashion Girl, invite everyone to the Rural Women’s Flowers & Fashion Gala Sept. 16.

Rural Fashion Girl hit the publicity jackpot the week it opened and has since continued to strive toward excellence.

In April 2016, the world’s most popular online news source, The Huffington Post, named the High Prairie ladies shop a must visit destination in its Guide to Everything Western Canada.

The news came as a welcome surprise to owners, Kristen Prpich and Lisa Baroldi.

“We got very excited. It was a good indication that we gave the store the right name and were on the right track. We cater to the rural girl. RFG is a response to the urban centric fashion world. We want to show the world what rural has to offer,” says Baroldi, marketing director at RFG.

Prpich and Baroldi took a beloved ladies clothing store located in downtown High Prairie and gave it a modern makeover. With the help of the shop’s previous owner and a global community of supporters, the owners, both born and raised in High Prairie, created Rural Fashion Girl, a local boutique and global lifestyle brand that celebrates rural women: their diversity, their unique way of life, their sense of style, and their ability to shape communities.

In December 2015, Susan Richter decided to close Trends & Images. Best friends, Prpich and Baroldi, eagerly took up the chance to be next generation leaders in ladies’ fashion.

“We wanted to make sure that women could run down to the store or hop online to find something that they love. We also wanted to inspire them, make a difference in the community and in their lives,” explains Prpich, who lives in High Prairie and operates the store.

“It’s part of a rural movement, a renaissance,” adds Baroldi. “Rural is cool. There are so many talented people here, and ridiculously fashionable, amazing ladies.”

The RFG effect is already being felt. As a result of RFG’s unique marketing, a modelling agency recently signed one of the store’s 41-year-old volunteer models.

The RFG employee empowerment program is enhancing the teams’ skills and employability at the company and beyond. RFG’s online following and customer base is expanding thanks to marketing that features rural women and places in photos taken by rural photographers. The RFG blog profiles different rural women on a regular basis.

RFG special events are bringing people together for fun, fashion, and even some fundraising. RFG hosts quarterly “Champagne and Shopping” events, holiday “Gifts for Your Gal” events for men, private shopping functions, personal shopping services, and has plans for much more.

On Friday, Sept. 16, RFG is joining forces with Christie’s Gardens and Greenhouses to host its inaugural Rural Women’s Flowers & Fashion Gala, a ladies’ night out event that will feature a fashion show for a good cause that attendees vote on that night.

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