Meet Brittany Polk!

Name and Location

Britany Polk

1.    What is your passion in life?

My passion is to be a successful creative director/designer/stylist lol.  I love helping people, especially when it involves clothing and accessory choices.

2.    What is your current job?

I currently work as an accounting assistant in a law firm.  This by no means is my career.  It’s that “I needed a job out of college and this is what I came up with” instance.  I received my Masters in Integrated Marketing Communications and am looking to utilize that degree in the creative field.  So now I am on a serious job hunt (anyone in the Chicago area can definitely forward me any job openings if you hear of anything lol).

3.    Do you own your own business? If so, what is the name and the mission? 

I did take a leap of faith and launched my own business called Luxcheri, pronounced “luxury” with Cheri being my middle name.   Right now it is a compilation of handmade jewelry and accessories along with vintage jewelry.  I plan to add my own clothing line and reconstructed/thrifted vintage clothing, but I am starting small first in order to build a solid customer base.  The mission is to provide unique options for anyone’s styling needs, whether it’s with jewelry or clothing.  I am all about one-of-a-kind pieces because it allows people to express their personal style without being cookie cutter.

4. Did you have any fears when first starting your business?

I have what you call kakorrhaphiophobia, fear of failing.  I know I am not the only one.  Sometimes, that gets the best of my and like in so many past projects, I would just give up.  But this time, I am like, what the heck, if I fail, at least I tried and I can always try again until I succeed.  After all success is nothing without failure.  So this time in my endeavors, I am really pushing myself to go beyond the limits and just produce things that I like and stick with it, good or bad.

5. Did you have any insecurities when first starting your own business?

Yes!! I always get this feeling that people will not like what I produce and that scares me.  Often times, I hold back more in those instances rather than just letting it be.  I put a lot of time, energy, and thought into the pieces I create, so just like anyone else, I always want to hear good feedback.  But I have realized everyone rocks to the rhythm of their own drum, so I have to understand some people will like it and some people won’t.  I just make sure I go hard for those who do like it.

6.    Describe your brand in one word.

Powerful

7.    Do you have any past failures that you can tell what you did to learn from them?

I have failed many times, so it’s hard to pick just one instance, but if I had to pick one, it would be not going for my dream in the beginning.  What I mean by that is, I wish I would have followed my heart when deciding on college.  Don’t get me wrong, college is and has been very great to me, but I just wish I would have went to fashion school instead of the traditional college.  I let people get into my head saying it’s going to be hard, not enough money, blah, blah, blah.  If I had followed my own heart, I think I would have been better off.  So I would consider that a failure, not following my own heart.  But now I try to listen to my gut instincts and just go for what I like instead of letting others persuade me.

8. Who are your target consumers? Would you want to change this?

Urban professionals are my target consumer.  I don’t think I would change this.  I think urban professionals have a lot of purchasing power, which is a very good thing.

9.    What inspires you?

This is a hard question because it is literally everything from color to art or even random people on the bus or walking down the street as I go to work.  I love looking at things and picking them apart to see what else it can become.

10. Who inspires you?

I have a few people who inspire me.

My mom – for her creativity and sense of style.  I learned a lot from her.

My pooh Felix – for his motivation, drive, and positive reinforcement that actually helped me jump start my business.

Aunt Bonita – the most outgoing and creative woman you’ll ever meet. She keeps it real all the time and she’s herself without any regrets.

Andrea aka Peachie – She is a very influential and inspirational person in my life as she is a young entrepreneur who has really been a mentor to me in helping me start my journey.

11. What is always at the back of your mind?

I am always trying to figure out what’s next and how can I make it unique.  Everyone and their momma create jewelry or clothing to some capacity and what I don’t ever want to do is copy or mimic someone else.  I always want it to be a reflection of me.  I have found that hard as some of the bracelets I create are similar to other designers, and that is one of the main reasons I decided to expand outside of that.  I like things to be my own.  Of course if my customers ask for something, I make it happen, but I always try to put my own twist on things.

12. What do you want to change about your job or career right now? 

The monotony.  I like to be moving around, not stuck at a desk entering in data all day, and that’s pretty much what I do.  It becomes very hard on some days when there is absolutely nothing to do.  I want a job that I actually look forward to going to everyday.  But as of now, I have to be thankful that I have a job.

13. What advice do you have for others?

Go for what you know and what you like.  Once you get that mindset, nothing can really stop you at that point.

14. How do you motivate yourself?

I look at my current situation and ask myself is this what I want to be doing in the next 5, 10, 15 years and then I kick it into high tail gear and start sketching and creating.  I want to enjoy my life, not be a negative Nancy about why nothing is going right.  You have to enjoy life.

15. Did you have any obstacles that you overcame to get to where you are now?

I think during this whole process, I have had to become more talkative.  I tend to be a tad quiet and very modest/shy when it comes to projects I am working on or am a part of. It’s weird because a part of me does like the limelight, and then the other part is like, no it’s too much.  But I definitely have been coming out of my shell more and that’s pretty big for me.

16. Where can we find you on the web?

I am working on getting my website together as we speak. The launch  date was suppose to be on August 17th, an ode to my mother for her birthday, but there have been some technical difficulties that have come up. So I am planning to launch in a couple of weeks.  I at least hope to be running on August 31.

Website: www.shopluxcheri.com

Instagram: luxcheri

Twitter: @luxcheri

Blog: www.luxcheri.blogspot.com


Meet Cheryl Mapp

Cheryl N. Mapp, Westchester IL

CNicole’s Chest is the name of my business

1. What is your passion in life?

It is to help others in any way possible.

2. What is your current job?

I’m currently unemployed

3. Do you own your own business? If so, what is the name and the mission?

I’m starting my own accessory line. My mission is to glamorize ladies one piece at a time.

4. Did you have any fears when first starting your business?

Yes, start up cost and if the business will be successful.

5. Did you have any insecurities when first starting your own business?

No, I know they products I produce are quality, and I’m proud to share them with others.

6. Describe your brand in one word.

Unique

7. Do you have any past failures that you can tell what you did to learn from them?

No, I’m new to this.

8. Who are your target consumers? Would you want to change this?

Women ages 15 to 50. No I would keep it the same. I want to make pieces for all are groups.

9. What inspires you?

The thought of successfully owning my own business.

10. Who inspires you?

My line sister. She just started her own online boutique.

11. What is always at the back of your mind?

Monies to finance the business, I want to use my own money. I don’t want to take out any loans.

12. What do you want to change about your job or career right now?

N/A

13. What advice do you have for others?

Follow your heart; don’t let others negative inputs deter what you want to do.

14. How do you motivate yourself?

The fact of me working for my self motivates me.

15. Did you have any obstacles that you overcame to get to where you are now?

Working with someone else who did not have the same passion as I do. I’m no longer working with anyone.

16. Where can we find you on the web?

For now facebook.com/cnmapp I’m currently working on a website.


Meet Ashley Nash

Ashley Nash, Opelousas, LA

  1. What is your passion in life? To become the creative director of my own company and own a boutique.
  2. What is your current job? Graphic Designer [Student Worker]
  3. Do you own your own business? If so, what is the name and the mission? Urban Serenity (Jewelry and accessories company) & Fresh Perspectives Photography and Graphic Design (Photography and Graphic Design)
  4. Did you have any fears when first starting your business? No
  5. Did you have any insecurities when first starting your own business? No
  6. Describe your brand in one word. Innovative
  7. Do you have any past failures that you can tell what you did to learn from them? When attempting to take the GRE, I went in head first without trying to study. I did not get into the first grad school I wanted and I learned that I should study to be prepared.
  8. Who are your target consumers? Would you want to change this? Women for the jewelry/accessory line. A variety of people for photography and graphic design. No changes are needed thus far.
  9. What inspires you? Living my dream.
  10. Who inspires you? My mother
  11. What is always at the back of your mind? Always looking for a way to push myself or be better.
  12. What do you want to change about your job or career right now? I’d like to be doing graphic design on a more professional level.
  13. What advice do you have for others? Fears are your biggest liars.
  14. Where can we find you on the web? www.ashnash.com www.twitter.com/ashnash www.ashnash.tumblr.com www.urbanserenityonline.com