The South Orange Village Center Alliance (SOVCA) is hosting its inaugural Business Summit on October 8, at 7:00 p.m. at 1 South. The Business Summit will be an opportunity for South Orange Village Center business owners to make new connections to help their businesses and to provide feedback for the SOVCA leadership team. In anticipation of the summit, Village Green is partnering with SOVCA to present weekly profiles of the people behind
seven of South Orange’s successful and unique businesses. Here, we feature Rafael Fishman, who along with his colleague Benita Sedoc, run The Leather Shop, located at 69 South Orange Avenue.
You can find The Leather Shop online at https://leathershop.co/, on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/theleathershopsouthorange/ and on Instagram.
1. Tell us about your business! What do you sell? What makes your business special?
Besides doing all kinds of shoe, handbag and leather repairs, we make custom handmade shoes and handbags for our clients and other designers. But we also have made shoes for the Met Opera productions, films and musicals. I think we are special because we give honest advice and great service. All the other shoemakers come to us for their difficult repairs. We also stock a large collection of leather and exotic skins.
2. How long have you been in South Orange?
3. What drew you to open your business in South Orange?
My mother lived here and an opportunity opened to take over a shoe repair shop so I took that opportunity, and we’ve been here ever since.
4. What do you like most about your customers?
Every client is different so there is never a dull moment. We have the most interesting group of clients and great conversations. And they like my jokes! I don’t like customers who come in with a bad attitude or start a
conversation with ‘this is really easy’.
5. What do you like most about doing business in South Orange?
We have personal relationships with lots of clients and a really fun group of fellow business owners.
6. Besides your fabulous business, what South Orange business could you not live without?
All of them are good, but our neighbors are special; Rocket Ship & Print, they do all our shipping and Jonathan and Jack from Pet Wants because they love our dog Libby. And I walk to Ashley Marketplace every day.