I’m so proud of my lil niece Nathifa, daughter of the sister from another mother. I’ve observed, how she has been growing her business over the years. She’s creative, dedicated and professional. The work Nathifa produces her business Checiegirl Creations is beautiful and created with heart. I knew I had to share her story. Nathifa’s story is an inspiring one, especially for teens like herself. This is Nathifa’s interview.
TTT: Tell us a bit about yourselves?
NS: My name is Nathifa Simon. I am 18 years old a1 mixed media artist and the owner and creator of Checiegirl Creations. I first started my business as a crocheter at the age of 11 but times change and so did my interests. As I discovered art and decided I wanted to be an artist at the age of 13 my business changed from crocheted accessories to mixed media artwork and related products. As the years have gone by I have branched out. I run workshops and provide mixed media art kits, so, anyone even a beginner can create their own artwork. I love exploring new creative exploits and enjoy sharing my arty adventures via Youtube and my other social media accounts.
TTT: What made you decide to start your own business?
NS: I really wanted to share my creations and later on inspire others to follow their own creative interests through workshops and art kits.
TTT: What inspires your work?
NS: This questions a tricky one, I’m asked this a lot and am never sure what to say since it could be anything from a movie I watched something I saw outside the skylight (loft window) or how I feel. I think most of the time it’s the mediums I choose, so sometimes I might see this one embellishment, scrap of paper or paint colour that draws me in then I work from there finding items that work best with what I’ve chosen to work with however a lot of the time my finished product is far from what I started with and the piece of paper I loved so much is now covered with layers of paint which might seem strange since I like it so much but this is one of the things I love about mixed media – “layers is everything” well that’s what I think.
TTT: How do you prepare for your day at a craft market?
NS: To get ready for a market I do a few things, such as check whether I have enough leaflets and business cards and I also make sure that my inventory book is updated. The next step is to pack my bags which is a bit like tetris because I need to fit everything including my products and props in as little bags as possible because I take the train to get to most of my markets which means a very large suitcase, a pull along and a couple smaller bags. Then I put everything close to the door and write a list so I don’t forget anything in the morning.
TTT: What has been the best customer feedback you have had so far?
NS: I can’t pick my best one because just hearing that products and artwork give them the inspiration to create their own is more than enough good feedback than I could ask for.
TTT: What advice would you give to fellow teens who are considering starting their own business?
NS: Do what you love, if you’re into stationery do that if you’re into fashion do that don’t just start a business for the money do it because you’re passionate about what you want to sell or share. Networking is the best way to get yourself out there and connect with other like minded people and small/business owners.