Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in clothing but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Lora Camp, Founder of Campfiber Yarns, located in Sherwood Park, AB, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I run a hand-dyed yarn business that creates luxury yarns for knitters and crocheters. The majority of my product is made with natural wool or animal fibers. Each product is handmade in small batches and with a ton of love. Fiber artists can create beautiful garments or accessories out of quality products.
Tell us about yourself
Campfiber Yarns came about organically. When my daughter was six months old, I was looking for a hobby to help find a project for just me. During this time, I was an elementary school teacher. When the pandemic hit, I decided to focus on our little hobby business and give our family the flexibility it needed. Now I run a full-time business out of my basement studio.
My grandma taught me how to knit when I was eight years old, and I absolutely love the idea of taking something from nothing to a beautiful, wearable garment. Using some fuzz from a sheep, I now spend my days adding color to white fibers and creating art with color. My job is the middle step in a creative process, in creating hand-knit items. It is so wonderful to be able to then sell my art to others to continue the journey in their own way with their own skills and vision.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I take pride in the fact that I have to build a full-time sustaining business through a pandemic around a young family. It was never my goal or intention to make it my full-time income, but I have built a wonderful community around my hobby. I have poured so much hard work into this business and wouldn't change it for the world!
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
One of the most challenging and attractive parts of being a business owner is it is all me. Everything you see is done by me and me alone, from the accounting to the social media, to the marketing to dyeing. The photography, the website, the packing of orders, all of it is me behind the business running it all. The variety keeps everything interesting but also involves a lot of researching and learning along the way. I have been working on this business for four years, and every day I am still learning!
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Don't be afraid to ask questions and learn to build relationships with people. So many business owners deal with the same issues and struggles, and collaborating or learning from others can save you a lot of grief!
- Find the balance between hiring others to help you (e.g., amazing accountants) and doing everything yourself to save money. Sometimes investing in good help can save you so much long term!
- Follow your passion and do some soul-searching. It is amazing how much I had to learn about myself to run a successful business. Taking a deep reflection on who you are, what brings you joy, and your true goals can make things easier to follow your path.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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