There seems to be a lot of mompreneurs nowadays who have been delving into the hair bow and accessories business. I recently came across Mompreneur Karen Umali, Proprietor of Vida Bows Hair Accessories Creations. Here is her story…
About Mompreneur Karen Umali
My name is Karen Umali, happily married to Ariel Umali for 3 years now and a mother to only child Asia Kariele. I’m 30 years old and currently working as a Sales Administration Officer for one of the Paint Manufacturing firms here in the Philippines. I am also the proprietor of Vida Bows Hair Accessories Creations. I am a self-confessed kikay mom and I love dressing up my beloved daughter. Creating hair accessories is really my passion and my hobby for over a year. A month ago, I have turned this hobby into something profitable. In my life, I want to achieve more, aside from having a happy family and a stable job. I also want something I can call my own, and I believe that this would be my business, Vida Bows.
Every single detail of the business, from the simplest thing to the biggest effort, is proudly my own doing. But of course, I have to give credit also to those people who supported me and trusted my abilities. Everything becomes possible because of our dear Creator, God. He molds me to what I am now and makes all these possible. I am grateful to my dear husband, who never fails to give me all the strength and encouragement I need. I also thank my beloved Kariele — my inspiration, my highest source of enthusiasm. I also thank my mother who gives me advise and recommendations for the improvement of every piece that I make. To a friend whose also in this industry, thank you for giving me facts about the industry I have entered. Thank you to friends and relatives who started to purchased my creations until other non-relatives and non-friends patronized my work. I have just started but I’m doing all that I can to improve everything that Vida Bows can offer you. I believe that all well known mompreneurs, as well as established entrepreneurs, started from being a neophyte, but what matters is that “it doesn’t just end there”; every day is a “working” day for challenges, improvements and success.
Here is my interview with Mompreneur Karen, Proprietor of Vida Bows Hair Accessories Creations
Ginger: What is your brand/business? What is it about? How long have you been in business?
Karen: My brand is VIDA BOWS Hair Accessories Creations. I create hair accessories, hair bows and elegant head pieces made especially of little girls, and women of all ages. I started advertising Vida Bows online just about a month ago (August 2013).
Ginger: Who is your market?
Karen: Vida Bows’ market are moms who love to dress and make their little girls fashionable. These are moms whose vice is creating new looks for their daughter as if the latter had a fashion show everyday.
Ginger: How did you come up with this idea? What made you decide to start this kind of business?
Karen: Since I was blessed with a lovely daughter, I got hooked to ordering bows and hair accessories for her. Aside from the mall finds, I also ordered online and I was buying in bulk, not only single pieces. I made sure that every outfit of my child had matching shoes and hair accessories based on colors and designs. One supplier of raw materials had a product that had caught my attention and it was a starter kit for creating your own hair accessories, so I ordered and tried doing some pieces. Ever since, I have been searching online for a lot of tutorials and know-hows.
Ginger: Were there any obstacles that you faced when you decided to pursue becoming a Mompreneur? What are these?
Karen: Yes, there are a lot of competitors; most are already established. After posting my designs on social networking sites, some liked my designs but they didn’t take interest on placing orders. I felt disheartened and I kept asking myself Is it right to pursue this? and What was I doing wrong? I almost lost hope. But my husband, my number 1 fan, gave me encouraging words and suggestions. After a week, I re-invented my pieces, did more fabulous pieces and posted them so that they looked really interesting, and during that week, in God’s grace, an order was made.
Ginger: What are three traits that you think a Mompreneur should have when starting their own business?
Karen: I always went by these rules from way back from my formal education, that if you are about to start a business it should be where your interest is. It should be with what you are passionate about to make you feel as if it were not work. So that when everything goes wrong, you would not lose hope, but instead fight and succeed on what you have started.
I think it is an important trait to be enthusiastic and have that drive that pushes you to improve the product and your selling ability, as well. Be courteous, in dealing with other people whether their regular clients already or even those who are prospective clients. But most of all, in everything you have started, always ask for God’s help, to mold us and guide us through.
Ginger: Any unforgettable moments or lessons that you learned as a Mompreneur?
Karen: My unforgettable moment as a Mompreneur, is when my 23rd month old baby held one of my creations and said “mommy, pretty”. Coming from my beloved daughter, that was the best compliment I have ever received.
Ginger: What advice can you give to other Mompreneurs?
Karen: All the mompreneurs have only one goal, to give and dedicate everything to our child / children, so always remember especially during uneasy / busy days, always put the family on top of the priority. It doesn’t mean that you need to disregard the demands of clients. Time management is the best way to attend to both responsibilities.
Ginger: Thank you so much, Karen! 🙂 We learned so much from you today. Wishing you more success!
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