Thirteen West Trolley, owned and operated by Haley Bunting, is a trolley shop aiming to be an escape from the “everyday brick &mortar shopping experience.” Haley designed it specifically to bring lifestyle shopping to you (instead of the other way around)! You’ll find Haley and her trolley providing a unique shopping experience for you at outdoor festivals, markets, and other large events! You won’t be surprised to know that within the walls of this unique shop, the focus is: unique. Thirteen West Trolley sells items that are carefully sought after and curated by Haley, herself! She focuses on providing her customers with items that are, not only unique, but high in quality! She also aims to provide products that are made by women with HUGE talents she hopes to expose.
As all of this sounds absolutely incredible,
I’m sure you’re all wondering WHO IS Haley Bunting!?
Well, we’re here to tell you!
Returning to the Quad Cities in the fall of 2016, Haley came with a BIG idea that she felt urged to bring to life. Spending 10 years in Colorado, where innovation was heavily trending, it’s no wonder Haley picked up on this mentality, growing her vision and leading her to build a brand that is completely unique to her. We were impressed, but not surprised, to find out that Haley is an all-around artist. She is a painter, a photographer, a passionate project builder… a visionary. This type of vision is expressed throughout her mobile shop and the full Thirteen West brand. Haley’s heart is always on the search for how she can make a bit more of a unique experience out of life for others. As her brand grows, she hopes to help support young women in business by offering business startup mentoring and continuing collaborations with women in her community.
This girl is amazing!
So, of course, we had to ask her some questions!
What inspired you to open up your trolley and when did you realize you could make a career out of this idea?
“I was living in Denver, Colorado when I fell in love with the markets and mobile shops. I had never seen anything like it. In the 5 years I lived in Denver, the number of mobile shops was outstanding! I figured it had to be working as a good retail model to get individuals concepts out at a much lower overhead cost. I just realized the business model was hard to beat for someone who was just starting out without a ton of capital. No storefront to pay on, less inventory to keep on hand, and the business, (or truck) itself, becomes equity!”
Why did you decide to open your own business instead of working for a company in a similar line of work?
“My goal was to create a life for myself and my future family that could have flexibility and grow to a level I was proud of. I think there are many great companies, but I am creative with many ideas, so for me, it would be hard to work in an environment where I would always dream of doing something on my own. I knew I was meant to have my own entrepreneurial journey.”
What do you wish more people knew about owning and operating a local business?
“It is much harder than it looks on the outside. It takes so much time and energy to get everything to the level you need it to be at to succeed. I am only one person, so sometimes it becomes quite hectic. I will say, however, that it is the most rewarding thing in my life, thus far. I have something to be extremely proud of.”
What do more people need to know about YOUR business specifically?
“We support women makers from around the nation who have their own small businesses. We curate the items in the shop to keep almost 80% of our brands small business owned by these women. I truly believe if we can teach the next generation to dream a bit harder and build the life they would like, that things such as raising children and having a balanced life would be much easier to achieve. It all stems from being an example. So, as this brand grows, I hope to help grow other small businesses, run by women, across the nation.”
What is your favorite part about being located in the Quad Cities?
“The Quad Cities is the perfect size area to begin a small business. The support for the local community has been absolutely incredible. Friends, family, and those who have no idea who you are, are genuinely excited for you and your dream. The Midwest was an amazing place to grow up and an even better place to begin my company.”
What makes your small business unique?
“I think the way the shop began was very unique in itself. Mobile retail began in 2011 as a trend on the West coast, but the Quad Cities did not see its first mobile shop until 2017. We were that first shop! Now, there are quite a few coming into play in the Quad Cities area and that is amazing to see! We also focus on women-run small business who are extremely good at their craft. I hope to help them build their brands by getting their product into more consumers’ hands by way of the mobile lifestyle shop. I want to put good products into view so people are making more conscientious purchases of products.”
What is your favorite product you have ever sold?
“I would say, currently, I really love the Pendelton wool totes and clutches. They are each so very unique and they really fit the vibe I am trying to convey through my brand: handcraft, unique, and something you can be proud of purchasing because it supports the young women who make the products.”
Do you have favorite season-based products you sell?
“I absolutely LOVE winter. Candles, chunky fabrics, and holiday gift boxes! This is my favorite season to buy for!”
QC Find Now would like to thank Haley for taking the time to talk with us and for giving us the opportunity to feature her and learn so much about her and her business.
We look forward to seeing Thirteen West grow as she follows her dreams and we would like to wish her good luck as she is searching for the perfect products for her favorite selling season!
Happy Hunting, Haley!
We encourage everyone to help support our local businesses by simply choosing to follow them on social media and engage with their posts; like them, love them, and share them with your friends and family!
You have no idea, as a business owner, what this does to boost visibility of the business and the morale of the owners as well! So go and show some love! We appreciate the fact that you take the time to do so!
If you have a business in mind that you would like us to feature, please feel free to fill out our online form found here!