Milagros Cabral has gone from announcing the sales of her sports shop in the same car used to warn of the meetings of the Communist Party in her town to bill online 1.5 million euros a year in party dresses. Without moving from his native Trebujena, a small town in Cadiz with just over 7,000 inhabitants, Cabral has only needed five years to have almost seven times more clients registered on his website than the locals have.
It's the effect Mariquita Trasquila, an e-commerce business for which Trebujena It begins to be more known than for its famous rice fields of the marshes of the Guadalquivir. "When the mayor goes to other towns – Jorge Rodriguez, from IU – there is already someone who tells him that if he is from the town of Mariquita Trasquilá", Cabral recognizes with a laugh, sitting in the offices of his shop, located in a manor house inherited from his family.
In the last year it has gone from attending 50 daily orders to 120 of today
Three months ago the businesswoman rented a new store to store the genre and one since she hired her last employee. But space has become small again. Cabral has had to launch himself to look for the ship "bigger that there is" for his existences and, in short, he will have to expand his staff of 17 employees -among them, a single man-. "We grow so fast that it's hard for us to respond with logistics," the delighted manager admits.
Despite having two stores – one in the company's own headquarters and another in Sanlúcar de Barrameda – it already sells five times more over the Internet to all of Spain than in its immediate surroundings. "Physical stores are, above all, marketing", confesses the entrepreneur. Between 2017 and 2018, it more than doubled its sales, going from an average of 50 daily orders to 120 today. "By 2019 I think we will reach 150 or 200 orders per day," says Milagros Cabral. He started his business venture after a personal catharsis. "This is something passionate, only that way it can be explained," he advances in a warning tone. Chemistry of training, started in commerce with a sports store that opened in 1996 next to the one that was his partner. "But then I got divorced and, without a hard time, I went to a blablacar at a fashion fair in Madrid. What I wanted was to build a brand, "adds the businesswoman. The result of that vital turn was the creation, in 2013, of Mariquita Trasquilá, name taken from the protagonist of a popular story by Trebujena, a witch that frightens the children who look out over the wells. Cabral was made thanks to an inheritance with a house in the center of the town that has been restored with his own hands to become the showcase of his signature.
Thousands of followers
With her party dresses, the entrepreneur only aspired to "reach clients from Jerez or Lebrija, no farther". However, the photo of a dress, uploaded to his Facebook fanpage, made him see that he could go much further: "I had 1,500 followers then. I started to share it, I reached the 5,000 'I like' and I sold 100 dresses that I did not have physically. It was crazy". Today it accumulates more than 308,000 users on that same page, to which add another 116,000 in its Instagram profile, 900,000 users on its website and 40,000 registered profiles in its online store.
The company has two lines: 'low cost' and signatures. Their costumes are worth 30 to 150 euros
Cabral is clear that showing his clothes in real bodies is one of the strongest points of his offer. Periodically the two saleswomen of Mariquita Trasquila pose with the party dresses in sessions of natural photos, made in the light of day by the manager herself. The website is not the result of a brainy work of marketing: the made with a simple and free tool for creating pages to which they added a payment platform Caixabank. With that letter of introduction, women from 24 to 35 have become their core customer segment. As for the clothing, some buy it already made to third parties and adapt part following the guidelines of the entrepreneur, who also uses suggestions from their employees.
The bet seems certain, as Cabral explains: "With 30 you have an average of five weddings a year and you do not want to repeat". To appease such compulsion in the purchase of dresses, skirts, blouses, overalls or accessories, the brand offers two lines of sale, a low cost and another of firms, with a price range of 30 to 150 euros.
And the formula seems to work. Despite being "a very Andalusian style", as defined by the owner herself – in fact, most of her suppliers come from the region – the brand is growing in places like Madrid. In that and other parts of Spain, the clients are surprised that the coveted and cheap dress they will wear at their next wedding comes from a small village in Cádiz.
There, among salt marshes, vines and whitewashed houses, Milagros Cabral continues to manage, create and sell without losing sight of her most immediate objective: "I want to launch a 100% own collection. It will be for the next season. "