Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Mekaila Blasko, Owner of Huddy Buddies, located in Nanaimo, BC, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Huddy Buddies are uniquely designed handmade soft sole booties that promote healthy foot development in babies and toddlers. They are made with a vegan suede soft sole with a thick plush lining and wool-blend crocheted uppers. They are easy to get on and stay on with their functional laces. When I first started, I focused on babies under the age of two, and I have now expanded to include larger child and adult booties. My customers encompass a wide range of cozy, loving people across the globe.
Tell us about yourself
Hi! My name is Mekaila, and I am the proud creator and maker behind Huddy Buddies. I taught myself how to crochet when I was on my first maternity leave from my high school teaching position. I designed and made my son a pair of soft sole slippers that gained a lot of attention at the Mom & Baby drop-ins. With some encouragement from family, I created a post on Facebook to see if anyone would be interested in buying a pair of my handmade booties. The response was amazing, and I have been making and selling boots ever since.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment as a business owner is growing this business into something that has allowed me to leave my job and do something I love. The greatest part of this is how it has allowed me to prioritize my family. What started as a small side hustle has turned into something that supports my family, not only financially but with the ability for me to dedicate more time to them in the ways they need.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
One of the hardest things that come with being a business owner is the uncertainty and lack of control over external factors. We have seen this in a big way in the last 3+ years with the pandemic, war in the world, supply chain issues, and now inflation causing people to hold on a little tighter to their dollars.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Create strong and clear boundaries to ensure a healthy work/life balance right out of the gate! Owning a business can very easily become all-consuming, and burnout isn't good for anyone.
- Reach out and connect with other businesses for support. Creating a community of other business owners is an amazing resource of information and a great form of support. This tip is not a "networking" tip. It's not about selling your product/service. Being a business owner can be isolating when you feel like you don't have people to talk to.
- The more passionate you are about what you are doing, the more joy you will get out of doing it. Short-term goals are just as important as long-term goals. Shoot for the stars!
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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