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Lake Country business with worldwide success celebrates 10th anniversary

Sweetlegs celebrated its 10th birthday on Friday, April 12
Chris and Addie Pafiolis, owners of the store Sweetlegs, celebrated the store’s 10th anniversary on Friday, April 12. (Rae Campbell/Contributed)

A Lake Country business celebrated its 10th birthday recently and shows no signs of slowing down.

Ten years ago, Chris and Addie Pafiolis welcomed their fourth child into the world and decided to launch a business from their kitchen table in The Lakes neighbourhood. After a year of creating a business plan, figuring out how to start it, where to get the materials and more, Sweetlegs — a body-positive apparel store — was born.

“It’s been a wild road with ups and downs and everything in between” said Chris.

“It’s been a rollercoaster,” added Addie.

Chris and Addie’s first location was down the road from their home in the back of Lakewood Mall, which eventually changed to a storefront store there. Before they were even open, people would knock on the door with their money ready, Addie added.

Over time as they grew, they moved to their current location at 104-9950 main Street in Lake Country. They also now have an e-commerce location on McCurdy Road in Kelowna.

Over the 10 years, they’ve grown so much that they commonly set their products anywhere they go and have shipped orders all over the world.

“We’ve been in Europe and Disneyland and see people wearing our products,” said Addie. “Our focus is to build confidence and that wasn’t out intention when we started. It’s so fun to see people out in the wild wearing them and it’s hard to keep your mouth quiet like ‘I made those!’

Chris added they’ve shipped orders up to the North Pole as well as Egypt and also every country.

“Our coolest one was during the pandemic, I saw on social media and saw Emily Hampshire from Schitt’s Creek wearing a pair of our leggings to the Grammy’s,” said Addie.

“We have fans all over the place, fans you would never expect,” said Chris.

Of course over 10 years, ups and downs are going to happen but as worried as they were, they were able to make it through the pandemic.

“We expected the worst like everybody,” said Chris. “It was one of those things where you don’t know where it’s going but in the end, we did quite well.”

Since then, other obstacles have provided a bit of a challenge as well.

“The rising costs has been tricky and we navigate that like any other business,” stated Chris.

For the 10th anniversary, Sweetlegs hosted a 60 per cent off sale in store and online, had a draw for a superfan, a photobooth and cupcakes at their store, and created live videos with customers as they arrived to the store.

“The key to our business and our success is the staff, we got such a great team from marketing to the warehouse, the team makes this happen,” said Chris. “It’s fun building the relationships with staff and the customers.”

“A big thank you to the community, we wouldn’t be here without everyone locally who supported us and helped us build our business,” added Addie. It’s been empowering and kind of shocking to watch it grow.”

As for the next 10 years, Chris and Addie want to keep their message the same.

“If we can just keep spreading body confidence and size inclusivity, that rewards us.” said Addie.

Hand-in-hand with their 10th anniversary, Sweetlegs is launching an ambassador program on April 15.

“It’s something were super excited to launch,” said Chris.

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Jordy Cunningham

About the Author: Jordy Cunningham

Hailing from Ladner, B.C., I have been passionate about sports, especially baseball, since I was young. In 2018, I graduated from Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops with a Bachelor of Journalism degree
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