Our shop of the week, Junghwa, is owned by Amy Stewart, who some of you may know through her blog. I happen to love the pieces of accessories in her shop- the rope bracelets, being my favorites. Amy and her husband, Sean are expecting their first baby, so congratulations and best wishes to them both!
What’s the inspiration behind your shop’s name?
My middle name and my Korean name is Junghwa. For as long as I can remember I’ve always wanted to name my future brand Junghwa. It has a special meaning to me because my grandparents were the only ones to ever call me by that name but they passed away several years ago. I think of them when I think of the name.
How old is your shop?
I opened my shop in February of this year. So, not very old. But I’ve been a member of Etsy for a few years now.
What inspired you to start your own home business?
My sister definitely gave me the push to start it up. She has a successful business called Twigs & Honey and I’ve always thought it would be fun to have my own.
Can you give us a peek on the creative process involved in your craft?
I think of things that I would like to wear or have and modify it into something I think others would enjoy. My first items sold were embellished clothing, so I’ve really changed the product line. But I’m sure I’ll come back to that one of these days.
What was the toughest challenge you faced so far?
I think the toughest part about having any kind of business is getting over the ups and downs. It’s easy to take it personally if you’re not having good sales one week. Then when you get slammed with large orders, it can be hard to not feel overwhelmed. It’s been a challenge trying to find that balance, but I think I’m getting a lot better at it with time.
How did you get over it?
I just try not to let it get to me. A lot of times I’ll talk to my sister about it because she gives really good business advice. But mostly I just try not to forget why I started the business in the first place.
the things you do when you’re not busy in your shop-
I love spending time with my husband. We try to be outdoors as much as possible and he keeps me balanced. I also love watching movies and shopping. Very girly but I’ve always been like that.
stuff inside your bag you can’t leave home without-
My blackberry, Korres lip butter in jasmine, Clean & Clear blotting sheets, and a pen and pad.
your favorite shops-
I’m all over the place when it comes to clothing stores. Depends on my mood and what I need to buy. The one store I spend the most time at is Sephora. They have the best beauty products. I love that store!
your top 3 favorite picks from your shop-
I really like my custom linen drawstring pouches. People buy them for their weddings and/or shops. I also like my knotted rope bracelet with love charm and the twisted rope bracelet. Very sweet for summer.
What tips would you want to share for aspiring home based entrepreneurs like you?
Do what you enjoy. Don’t make it a “job”. And always remember that all shops have ups and downs. Be patient, be inspired, and be original.
Any message to your customers and the people who support you?
Thank you everyone for your continued support. I truly appreciate it. You’ve helped make my dreams come true.