The first in my series Getting to Know My Business Friends features Ashley Chapman from A.N.C. Creations. Ashley is 25 years old and is mature beyond her years. She is a very multi-talented young woman and I count myself lucky to be called her friend. Following is an interview I conducted with her today.
1) Ashley do you mind telling us a little about yourself, and what you do?
Hello everyone! My name is Ashley. I have been happily married for going on 7 years (this coming March). I began my business A.N.C. Creations nearly a year ago now. A.N.C. Creations offers me the chance to be myself, help others, and provide great items to everyone. Okay intrigued? I am a designer (sewer) I sew clothing, crochet clothing, accessories, home decor, and more. I also make beaded jewelry. Asides from this, I also Professional Service people's photos. Perhaps, you do not know what that means, let me explain. I professionally enhance your photos to where they look for alive, real, and colorful. I also, do advertising through my website, in which I am hoping to expand my advertising to post cards, flyers, pamphlets, and more.
2) How did you start your business?
That's the thing, I wasn't looking to start a business really. I never dreamed of having something that I created from scratch, something that I was proud of, and now I do. I was sitting at home one night a little down in the dumps searching online thinking well I sure wish there was a site that had just handmade items, they are just better quality all the way around. Before I knew it I was on Etsy and within a week I was signed up and selling. Shortly after, I started my own website where I received my first sale. I also did some pajama's for a friend of mine as well, plus some clothes for my sister. Within 30 days I had the basics down pat on how to run a business, but not how to make it successful. In the beginning, I would stay up for hours upon hours researching what I needed to do differently, and before long I came to photo editing, because photos "say a thousand unspoken words" when you are trying to sell items online. Shortly after this, advertising came to me.
3) Why do you do so much, instead of just sticking to one part to a business? (As in why don't you just sew or crochet?)
Honestly, doing everything is what I love the most. I love to help people, to give people things they could otherwise not get elsewhere. I love being diverse and having the option to grow as a business owner. To tell me to choose between all of my talents is like telling me to chop off my right arm, and I am right handed. I love the challenges, I love all the people I get to work with, why should I choose when so many people can benefit and enjoy what I offer them.
4) Do you have a favorite part to the business?
Yes, and no. I really love crocheting as I am able to try new patterns and stretches on a regular basis and create wonderful crocheted items. On the other hand, I love all that I do so choosing one favorite part would be the same very difficult to do. I love working with customers, I love hearing their feedback on the items because I believe that it is the customers whom give honest feedback that keep me going strong.
5) Do you have a favorite item you sell?
Absolutely. Though I would consider this a 2 item favorite. I dearly love my white and pink baby Crocheted 3 piece outfit. It is absolutely adorable. I also love my Photo Editing, it gives me a way to get away from crocheting for awhile and sit back and relax with some pictures and work. I love to crochet the baby outfit and I love to Edit photos.
6) Do you have any words of wisdom or anything motivating you would like to say?
Yes. For others out there thinking about selling or wanting to quit, "The only reason you think you can't do something, IS because you think you cannot do it". If you think you cannot do it you will not succeed. Keep Can't, won't, shouldn't, "no", out of your vocabulary and you WILL SUCCEED.
Never give up even if you think you have no more left in you. Keep pushing forward because at the end of the Rainbow are wonderful Flowers, Great People you meet along your journey, and a beautiful ending to a well earned life.
For you buyers. Remember that your feedback is essential to all of us that sell online and in person. Without your feedback we do not know where we can improve. We need to know what you feel about an item you purchased so we can improve our business and customer satisfaction. As this too is a learning process with us learning what you as a customer want out of our items.
Always feel free to ask questions and never not ask because your scared you will offend us. We would rather hear from you and answer your questions than you turn away on something you may want, like, etc.
You can find Ashley at the following places online:
Thank you Ashley for being my featured guest today.