Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Zahava Schwartzman, Founder of Tissus For You, located in Montreal, QC, Canada.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

I sell high-quality quilting cotton, flannels, and accessories to crafters and sewists all over the world.

Tell us about yourself

What can I say about myself? I have a bachelor of English Literature and an MA in Educational studies. I have diplomas in both Creative Writing and Professional Copywriting, am a Certified Professional Life Coach, and am currently certifying as a doula. What I do not have is an MBA or any professional business schooling. And I am. I think I got into the business just because I get bored easily. When I had the opportunity to invest a small amount of money into something beautiful that would be my own, I leaped at the chance.

It should be noted that I have no classical artistic ability. I cannot paint, draw, or sculpt. But this business has been my oeuvre d'art, so to speak. The collection of beautiful fabric that I sell to the world is both my creative expression and my motivation to continue on. I love being able to finish up a bolt and list a fresh new arrival. I love the feedback I get from satisfied customers. All of that makes it the most rewarding career I have never trained for laughs.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

I would have to say it's my carefully curated collection of fabric. I'm not the type of business owner where just anything goes or who will just sell any old fabric that shows up on their doorstep. Instead, I take great pride in selecting each and every bolt of fabric that I carry to express my voice in the market visually. I like to think of my store as an online destination where people come to shop because they know that every fabric is fun and whimsical and that they will find a great selection of adorable, high-quality fabrics all in one place. It's my masterpiece!

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

I would say it's keeping the motivation up when things slow down. There's a lot of self-coaching involved and accepting that sometimes the best that you are capable of that day is enough.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Become an opportunist. Keep your eyes open for anything and everything that could possibly turn a profit. Even if it's in a field, you have no idea about. You can always get the info when it's relevant.
  2. Never stop learning. Whether you take a business course or learn as you go. You'll be doomed if you think you know it all. That's the killer which stops evolution.
  3. Accept that the beginning will be tough. Yeah, people say it. And you think that you might be different. But it could take a few years to get yourself turning a profit. So you've gotta stick with it no matter what. Because the beginning will be tough, but also really exciting.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

It has been my single greatest joy to know that people are making beautiful items for themselves and their loved ones using the fabric that they have purchased from my humble little shop! I am so grateful to all my supporters and hope to be able to serve them for many more years to come.

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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