Fortitude Founder

Dekalb County
Founder Profile




Cusp Apparel



$500 Grant Date

May 2021


An affordable, quality online clothing boutique for young adults.

A Woman-Run Boutique That’s Building Community Locally.

When she graduated with a business administration degree from the University of Saint Francis, Alexis Heffelfinger opened her online clothing boutique, Cusp Apparel. With help from professors, mentors, and a family full of entrepreneurs, Alexis launched Cusp hoping to fill a gap in the boutique industry. She wanted to offer young adults a curated collection of clothing and accessories that they could afford.

Alexis combined knowledge from her studies with behind-the-scenes experience working as a boutique key holder. She also ran a profitable Instagram page prior to graduation where she designed, styled, and resold thrifted clothing. With a natural drive for hard work, Alexis is determined to run a successful, growing business while employing and mentoring other women along the way.

In the long run, Alexis would like to maintain a primarily online boutique experience for her customers. She plans to expand into a few small brick-and-mortar stores while utilizing a fulfillment warehouse as well.
Currently, she is strengthening Cusp’s online presence by building relationships with influencers who can promote her products. Alexis is also expanding her offerings by introducing men’s apparel to her online store.
Alexis plans to use her grant to purchase the supplies needed to host pop-up shops in the region. With these portable shops, she can introduce customers to Cusp Apparel in person, allowing them to interact with her products and build relationships locally. Added bonus: many of the supplies used to run the pop-ups can be used in a warehouse or a brick-and-mortar store down the road. Alexis is on the Cusp of something good in northeast Indiana.
Connect with Cusp Apparel on social media

Business Updates

Meet a Fort Wayne fashion entrepreneur launching a business before she graduates – and helping others

What does fashion mean to you?

To Alexis “Lexi” Heffelfinger of Auburn, clothing, and fashion are an opportunity to empower her customers and to make a positive impact on other budding entrepreneurs in Fort Wayne.

“Fashion+Retail+Community+Entrepreneurship+#ShopSmall are all something I am incredibly passionate about,” Heffelfinger says on the website for her brand, Cusp Apparel (@shopcusp), which launched April 17.

Contact Alexis Heffelfinger