Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in apparel but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Liz Heyland, founder and designer of Snug As A Bug, located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Snug As A Bug is a Made in Canada brand focusing on fun sewn products and clothing for your whole family. We make matching onesie pajamas, personalized Santa hats and stockings, matching family aprons - all the fun stuff! In the summer, we produce a line of kids' sun hats designed to stay on little ones' heads and offer both 100% cotton and UPF fabrics.
At our retail store, customers can purchase all of our Snug As A Bug branded products along with a vast selection of classic games and puzzles, and products to get your kids outside (seeing that we are next to one of Toronto's most loved parks).
We have been in business for 29 years and are constantly evolving. As a fiercely independently owned small business, we are a staple in our Junction neighborhood.
Tell us about yourself
I am a professional clothing and sewn goods designer, working in Toronto under the Snug As A Bug brand since 1992. I started out by making and selling kids' clothing at craft shows all across Canada.
Since then, a lot has changed, but I still fill my day with lots of design: designing and choosing fabrics, making patterns, graphic design, and web design. Another part of the business I really enjoy is recognizing opportunities in the market, calculating what it would take to fill the need, from finances to people.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest business accomplishment is coming up with the matching onesie pajama idea and selling them online in 2005. Back then, the online world was so different than it is now, and being first to market allowed me to become financially free.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
I would say the hardest thing is that you are really alone in your vision. You have the most to gain and the most to lose by the decisions that you make. I often say that being an entrepreneur is about being right enough of the time to stay afloat.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Jump in and figure it out as you go! You will never be able to anticipate what will happen, and you need to have something to fix - not something to plan.
- Know your numbers and play around with them in "what if" scenarios.
- Improve your leadership skills and be self-aware.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email firstname.lastname@example.org; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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