Natasha Stanley is a wife, mom of two girls and owner of Bella Ragazza. Discover how this mom and small business owner finds work life balance and how her children changed her mindset when it comes to fashion.
Tell us about yourself.
My husband, Tyler, and I have two girls, Sloan and Hart. Having a 4 and 5 year old makes life lots of fun. We love to travel and take vacations. Our family is always on the go with dance, t-ball, school, church activities and other events for kids going on in Owensboro.
Tell us about Bella Ragazza.
Bella Ragazza opened in May 2013. It was always my dream to open a store. I have always been in the retail industry and worked in different aspects and wanted to learn as much as I could to have my own store.
We started in downtown for six years and really learned a lot about my customers and their needs. Moving to Wesleyan Park Plaza in 2019 was a big leap with a big reward. We went into the Covid shutdown shortly after moving and that’s when I realized more than ever what my customers need. Building relationships and offering convenience and attention is why people want to shop small.
How is it balancing work and kids?
The saying “it takes a village” is so true! And I have a village. Our family is our lifeline. They are so hands on with my kids and my business. My father-in-law runs my kids to where they need to be and delivers packages to customers. I have an amazing amount of love and support and I feel so blessed everyday to have the family and friends that God gave me.
How do your girls influence you as a business owner?
Having children changes just about everything in your life. Especially your mindset. Building confidence in women has always been the mission, but looking at that mission as a mom of two girls means even more to me. Seeing them light up when they feel good about what they are wearing is pretty amazing. My youngest, Hart, feels on top of the world when she’s in a princess dress or has on a necklace. Sloan loves being comfortable. She gets giddy when she’s wearing even a stained t-shirt that was given to her by her Nana or Meme because it makes her feel loved and knows it came from someone special. Clothing can seem superficial to some people, but I think it can make you feel powerful. It doesn’t have to be glamorous or trendy. Seeing my kids feels confident, having fun and feeling loved in clothes is pretty cool. I don’t think that feeling has to end at childhood. Women need that just as much, if not more.
What do you like best about being a small business in Owensboro?
I have said so many times that I’m so glad I decided to move home to Owensboro to start my dream. I had lived in other places and didn’t see that for my future. My plans weren’t God’s plan and it’s amazing to see what Owensboro has done for my life, my confidence and my dream. Customers have become friends and family. On my worst day, getting to go to work just to be around my staff can turn everything around. They bring me joy and a feeling I wish everyone could have at their job. Being a small business that builds intimate connections with people where you feel like you really know someone is really special in Owensboro because it’s full of really genuine people that truly care about you and want you to succeed.