Hey y'all! My name is Marisa and I am the founder and owner of Southern Sol. Southern Sol started off as just a dream while in high school. Growing up (born & raised in Pearland, TX), I used to shop at my cousin Frank’s surf shop in Webster, Fox Den. I was absolutely obsessed with his store, the brands, the whole vibe, It was my absolute favorite place around. Fox Den was honestly the inspiration of it all. Once I got into my freshman year of college at Blinn in Bryan, TX, I kept thinking about Fox Den and how one day I wanted to create something similar, a place I loved just as much. I used to doodle on notebook paper in class of what I envisioned this store to be but I didn’t have a name. My first college roommate, one of my best friends, was watching me doodle one day and throwing out names. I kept saying Southern but I had no clue what else. She said “What about Southern Sol since you love the sun, it’s unique?” That’s how the name was born and it’s a name that is so special to me. From there, Southern Sol was just a name and that was it. After my freshman year of college in 2014, I decided to take a small break from school and move to South Texas to help out my sister and brother in law with their new business. This also gave me an opportunity to chase my dream of Southern Sol. I did my research, I reached out to mentors who I looked up to for advice, I registered as a business, and then I attended my first market where I decided what brands to start with. From there I didn’t really have a plan to be honest, I just knew that I needed to get my name out there. I started with my one rack of clothing and set up shop at a friend’s house for a pop up shop party. I outgrew that one rack and expanded into two racks, I did some small shows to keep on going. Once I finally got the hang of everything, I rented a 10x10 booth at my first Major show in Warrenton for the Roundtop /Warrenton Antique week. During this time, I had decided that I wanted to go back to college as I felt it was important. I was accepted into Sam Houston State University to study Agricultural Business so I was making a big move, at first I couldn’t find housing in Huntsville, so I lived in Coldspring which is a small town outside of Huntsville. I had made some friends in that town and some of those friends owned small shops there at the time. For the summer I was able to rent out part of one of my friends' boutiques and set up shop. After a few months of living there, I had found housing in Huntsville and classes were finally starting. I'll be honest, I was overwhelmed and unsure about my boutique at the time, I just wanted to focus on college so I took a break from Southern Sol, to get back into the groove of school. After a year of being back in college, I decided to start things back up. I had just moved into my old tiny college duplex and that’s where I set up shop. There was no way at the time that I could travel and set up at shows taking 16-17 hours semesters and working 2-3 part time jobs. During this time, I learned the ways of social media and dove into the online world. For the next two years, I solely focused online but with my main focus on college. Towards the end of college, I had the opportunity to rent out a space in a popular vendor boutique in Tomball and jumped at the chance. At the same time I had also begun my first “big girl” job at a Texas winery as one of their wholesale sales representatives. In May of 2018, I graduated from Sam Houston with my bachelors of science in Agricultural Business and minor in Animal Science. I moved to Tomball for a brief period of time to help out with that vendor boutique I was in while continuing to focus my efforts on my online store and my job with the winery. After a few months, I came across the opportunity to rent out a building in Cotulla where I was previously living. I moved back there and I opened my first storefront in January of 2019. During that year was the year I started dating my now Husband, Jake, someone I went to Highschool with and who lived in Friendswood. I was still working with the winery at the time but my territory and job duties grew, I worked the San Antonio and Houston territory so I traveled back and forth every single week. I was in South Texas half the time checking on my San Antonio accounts for my Winery Job and managing Southern Sol and the other half of my time, I was in Houston checking on my Houston accounts and visiting Jake. At the end of 2019, I had made the decision to move back home, I had traveled hundreds of miles that past year and I was ready to settle in one place. At the beginning of 2019 I closed down my Cotulla storefront, moved back home, and searched and found my new storefront in Friendswood, TX. I had resigned from my winery job and decided it was time to focus all my efforts on Southern Sol. I opened March 2, 2020 (two weeks before the pandemic began). From my opening day in 2020 to 2023, a lot has happened. We survived the pandemic as a small business, we met some of the best customers who have become like family to me, I married the Love of my life on October 15th 2022, and in Spring of 2023 I had made the decision to close down my Friendswood storefront. The past three and half years as a Friendswood Brick & Mortar owner have been an experience I will always be thankful for and an opportunity only possible because of yall. The decision to close my storefront was not a decision I took lightly, after a lot of prayers and consideration, It was the right decision that God placed in my heart. The decision to close was solely a personal decision but it's an exciting step forward for us and one I am so thankful you guys have understood and supported us through. I know you’re thinking, so where is Southern Sol now? We’re still here, we just moved our operations back mainly online AND you can still find us locally in Friendswood inside of Silver Bee Boutique, we have a mini version of our store in there! I hope to see you around, whether it’s at our booth in Silver Bee or as an online supporter!
Thank you so much for reading Southern Sol’s story, I know it’s a long one. And whether you’ve been shopping with us for 9 years, 3 years, 3 months or 1 day, your support doesn’t go unnoticed. I am so thankful to be here to serve yall and the community around. Southern Sol may not be exactly like my main inspiration, Fox Den, but it’s grown and morphed into my own version of a place I love so much. I hope yall love it just as much. Also, a fun fact, that I think is so cool..Fox Den started in the same shopping center as my Friendswood location, back in 1973 until 1988 when they moved to their new location.
Thank you for all the love and support of Southern Sol. When you shop here, you’re not supporting a big chain store; you’re supporting a small business, a small family who loves being able to support their community, and a small team of awesome and local employees.
From the bottom of my heart, truly, thank you, we wouldn’t be here without you.