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TMI: Bijuju Sets out to Touch, Move, and Inspire the World

By Elisha Neubauer

With a back story almost as beautiful as its product line, Bijuju is no ordinary jewelry boutique. Although they only opened their doors to the public in 2004, Bijuju has grown tremendously over its brief lifetime, with over eight boutiques across North and South Carolina. And, like any strong business-minded operation, they have no plans to stop any time soon. With big plans for product expansion, Bijuju is a force to be reckoned with- and they look great doing it!

As all stories do, this one has an unforeseen beginning. While returning from their dream vacation in Egypt, Abe Safa made a unique proposal to his wife. After fifteen years in the clothing industry, alongside his brother Rob, he breached the subject of creating an accessories-only boutique. Of course, his wife jumped at the chance, despite never having been involved with the retail world before.

The decision was made in the late months of 2003, but the business was promptly in full swing in March of 2004. "A lot of love, thought, sweat and tears went into opening that first location," Joujou Safa states on their website. "We worked countless hours creating displays that inspired, color coded sections and picking out the perfect packaging." With a combination of the brothers' experience in the retail industry and Joujou's sense of fashion and eye for detail, the concept took off quickly, expanding faster than anyone could have imagined.

Six months after throwing open their doors, the Safas quickly opened a second location to capitalize on their unexpected momentum. This growth continued on an equally fast track, leading to the eventual creation of their now eight deep store roster.

As they attempt to continue on their ever-steady path, Bijuju has begun adding new products to their line. "Well frankly, we have tried being an accessory only store for 11 years," says Abe Safa. "This year have introduced clothing to a couple of our locations and have had great results. Once we have a good base of clothing and accessories and have hammered out the kinks, we will try shoes."

Attempting to break down the walls of the retail industry, Bijuju has been built on a motto unlike any other. They proclaim that the sole purpose of Bijuju is to Touch, Move and Inspire the World. They call this motto 'TMI' and have granted their staff the authority to do whatever is necessary to ensure they make a difference in each customer's life. "We strive to put a smile on every single person's face by the time they walk out of our store," Safa proudly states of the thought process that sets Bijuju apart from their predecessors.

"As for our products, we sell mostly fashion forward pieces at great prices," Safa explains. "There are a few basics or what we call necessities, but mostly we are at the forefront of fashion, pushing the envelope a bit." Bijuju focuses on smaller quantities of each product, bringing in multiple shipments of merchandise per week. This ensures a wider selection of fresh product without creating a notion that everyone has a similar piece. "We do not want a woman wearing our stuff and coming across someone else wearing the same thing, so we turn our inventory over quickly."

Bijuju focuses heavily on their accessory line, showing the most frequent sales in handbags, clothing, bracelets and sunglasses. "We are currently featuring our winter vests now," says Safa. "It's pretty early but they are blowing out of the stores already."

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About The Author

Elisha Neubauer is a freelance editor, ghostwriter, book reviewer, and author. She is...

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