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Friday, 12 September 2014

Esther Egbunkonye of Sisterhood Crafties - Crafting Beautiful Things Comes To Me Easily

Meet Esther Egbunkoye of Sisterhood Crafties, designer of classy and unique hand crafted Fascinators/ Saucer hats, Ankara neck & ear statement pieces. This young entrepreneur  graduated in 2006 with a degree in History and International studies, but has channelled her creative energy into doing something she is absolutely passionate about. Read excerpts of her interview with multicreativeme below:

Give a brief introduction of your business endeavour
At Sisterhood Crafties, we offer fabulous, classy and uniquely designed hand crafted Fascinators/ Saucer hats, Ankara neck & ear statement pieces. We also do bouquets for your bridal train. The business name was inspired by my twin sister and I, plus the fact that our products are designed for females.

Do you see yourself as a creative individual and at what point did this happen?
Yes, I see myself as a creative person because I love crafting beautiful things with my hands. It comes to me so easily, I guess it is inherent!

Describe your journey so far.
I had learned the basics of millinery in 2003 when hat making was the in-thing. Then sometime in 2012, I got inspired by a speaker who spoke extensively about working with your talent. That is how I started creating something unique and and different from the knowledge I have in millinery. The journey has been both peaceful and challenging. When I started out, I got few orders through word of mouth and referrals. These days, my customers are from all parts of the country.

Did you get discouraged at any point?
Yes, I got discouraged when prospective customers were skeptical and afraid of transacting business online. Meanwhile, I do most sales online.

What has kept you going?

The customers I have designed for so far are absolutely satisfied with my work. That gives me joy and affirmation.

What sets your work apart from others in your niche?
The originality, uniqueness, quality and creativity of my work. Other people design the regular fascinators you see in the market, but mine are different. I am yet to see a designer of my kind in Nigeria.

What hurdles have you encountered and how are you dealing with them?
The greatest hurdle is insufficient power supply but I handle that by switching over to alternative sources of power. Another is dealing with prospective customers from other parts of the country who are new to online business, but I always find a way around that.

What habits of yours would you say contributes to your creative output?
I love unique, classy and quality things and I have practically channeled these into my work.

How would you encourage aspiring creative business owners?
They should be consistent, believe in themselves and stay abreast with the latest trends in their field.

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