She lined everything up neatly on the shelf ensuring perfect product placement. She hung the clothes carefully and prepared to open. Young Schayene Silva looked around her room and thought “one day I’ll have a place of my own.”
Now as an adult, 30 year-old, Silva and her 31-year-old husband Felipe Resende, own and operate their international online store, Angel Heart Boutique.
“We don’t have a storefront but we’re an online boutique that specializes in women's’ plus size clothing and we sell all over the world, mainly to the United States, but also to Australia, Canada, England,” Silva said.
Silva said Angel Heart began April 14, 2014, after she left her position at an oil company and decided to sell used items on Ebay with Resende including toys and clothing.
“We did very well with selling clothes so we started buying clothes that had the feeling of ... a more vintage, more bohemian look, and then it just took off,” Silva said.
Soon after, they outgrew Ebay, launched their own website in January 2015 and Resende also decided to leave his position at a tech company in 2016.
“The corporate world is not something I ever wanted to be in, and my family, they always had their own businesses , and we wanted to do something for ourselves,” Resende said.
The two wanted to follow in their families’ footsteps and for Silva she wanted to achieve the dream she had as a child.
“When I was a kid that would be my favorite play time was to play store. I would get my mom’s VHS and make like I had a video store or all the clothes and I’d have a clothing store or I’d open a pharmacy with any medicine I could find,” Silva said.
Over the last three years of operation Angel Heart has brought in a total revenue of $4.5 million.
Silva said Angel Heart is a new kind of local business in that it operates locally but reaches thousands of people.
“The Internet is giving the little guys like us a chance to fight back so when people talk about buying small or shopping local they need to support online because it’s just two people,” Silva said. “Although it looks so out there and futuristic it's the little guys that’s doing it.”
Silva and Resende attended college at the University of Central Oklahoma and Rose State College but never felt they fully thrived in a learning environment.
When choosing the name, they wanted to pick the best one and had a long list until they came up with the perfect title.
“We just knew we wanted that word in the name just for protection or something to take care of us so we wanted Angel something ... and we were like Angel Heart and it was simple and I thought that (it) would bless us and I feel like it was a blessing,” Silva said.
Angel Heart sells all over the world, but because it is without a retail store front not many Edmond residents know about the business, but many from outside Edmond throughout the country love their products.
“Just not in Oklahoma but as a whole I think people have responded really well to us because our increase is huge compared to other companies, and 50 percent of our customer base is return customers so I think that means a lot,” Silva said.
The store sells clothing in all sizes but they primarily focus on plus size because Silva said she relates to women of that demographic.
Though she’s healthier now the owner said she struggled with being overweight growing up.
“My whole life I’ve always been plus basically so that’s who I associate to and who I know how to cater to I think,” Silva said.
Silva and Resende are from Brazil and met in Edmond after working together briefly and they both have important roles in the business.
“I would be front of the house and he’s more back of the house. I would do like new items, marketing, press ... anything before the sale and he does everything after the sale so like accounting, payroll, shipping,” Silva said.
Angel Heart has adapted to the the current fashions and Silva and Resende travel to various places to discover new pieces for their inventory.
For Silva and Resende the best aspect of owning their business is having the freedom to control their schedules and money flow.
“We’ve been doing as a home-based business for so long that it still feels like home base so that’s why we make it look cozy here,” Silva said.
In the beginning the two did the work of 10 employees which has allowed them to live and work comfortably.
Currently Angel Heart has a staff of six and according to employee, Mackinlee Allen, everyone feels like family even though they’ve only been working together for a short time.
“(I love) how friendly it is and even though we’ve only been working here for (a few weeks) we’re already so close knit and it’s always fun. I’ve never had a job that I’ve always been excited to go to until now,” Allen said.
What started in a 1,600 square foot apartment as a small online business with a husband and wife, became an international company located in a warehouse, with a staff of six and growing success.