Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in crafting but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Jemima Flendt, Founder of Tied with a Ribbon, located in Perth, Western Australia, Australia.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Hello, I am Jemima Flendt. I design and create Quilt and Sewing Patterns for my label Tied with a Ribbon, specialising in modern, fun designs that pack a punch and deliver helpful skills and tips so that even a beginner Quilter/sewer can feel confident in the making. My professional background as a High School Home Economics Teacher has driven my passion for teaching and sharing all things Quilts and sewing. I have written three books – Weekend Quilting, Quilt Big, and Quilt It, Crochet it! I have also designed 2 Fabric Collections for Robert Kaufman/Two Green Zebras. I thoroughly love teaching Quilting and Sewing classes, Retreats, and Workshops here in Australia and overseas, as well as contributing to many major Quilting Publications and offering my signature Online Beginners Quilt Course – New Quilt on the Block.
Tell us about yourself
Since I can remember, I have always been around fabrics and crafts. My Nanna used to teach me to crochet, and my mum was always making at her sewing machine. I have grown up to love and be inspired by all things fabric, textiles, buttons, ribbons, and embellishments. I started quilting in my teens, making quilts from leftover scraps from Mum's sewing projects. I was quickly hooked and then started to take classes to learn all about different quilting techniques and skills. My professional background as a High School Home Economics Teacher has driven my passion for teaching and sharing all things Quilts and sewing. I started building my business on the side of part-time teaching but found I got to a point where I had to make the decision to either go back to teaching full-time or go all in on my business – Tied with a Ribbon. I haven't looked back since choosing to go all in on Tied with a Ribbon.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
That's a tough question – it would have to be between having written three books or being asked to teach, and Keynote Speak both Nationally and Internationally at Quilt Conventions, Workshops, and Retreats. This feels like such a recognition of my passion for teaching and how much I love to inspire and teach makers to quilt and enjoy their own quilting adventures.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
The ongoing balance of bookwork versus wanting to sew all the things. As a creative, I want to put out new designs into the world, but I sometimes find it hard to get the motivation to work on the website and bookwork and accounting things that come with running a business. I would rather sew any day.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Create a business that lights you up – one that you look forward to building and get up every day motivated to "work" your business.
- Start small and then build – work on the fundamentals, then you can add all the shiny things as you go, one by one. Don't overwhelm yourself with trying to do all the things in the beginning.
- Know that the setbacks and the frustrations test your motivation and passion for being a business owner. If you can make it through the "hard" days and still be passionate about your business, you are in the right place.
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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