“I love body jewelry and I always strive to make them very bold as my aim is to make you stand out. When you stand out you display and exuberant positive emotions to those around you”
Conversation with Sharon Wendo, a savvy fashion entrepreneur her journey through self-employment.
Her story is that of twists and turns before she found her purpose. Being a jewelry designer and passionate about everything made in Africa.
Sharon shares her passions, purpose and evolving spirit with Khusoko on what it takes to start jewelry designs and what she has learned in the process through Epic African Jewellery.
Who is Sharon Wendo?
Sharon is a young woman who is very passionate about entrepreneurship and designing. I am the founder CEO and Creative Director at Epic African Jewellery.
You are involved in several initiatives can you tell us more about your passion and purpose?
I was volunteering in the Ficha Uchi Campaign sometimes back, it is an organization which helps underprivileged kids by providing them with decent school uniforms, I really loved the course and I was happy to be a part of it.
I am very passionate about Epic Jewelry and entrepreneurship and I would love to pave the way for other young women to get into entrepreneurship and pursue their dreams as it is very fulfilling
What drove you to start your own business in 2015?
I wasn’t happy in the job I was doing and I resigned and pursued my passion, jewelry with an African touch and that’s the best decision I have ever made in my life
What does success mean to you?
Success means a lot especially when you are in the creative space. It is not easy, but when people buy and appreciate my work that’s the biggest success.
What are some of the key skills one needs to have to attain success?
The most important thing is hard work. You have to put in the work and the hours to achieve your goals. Another thing is patience, running a business is not easy and you need to be patient to start seeing the results.
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New week, great accessories for you, new opportunities and positive vibes. Happy new week loves. #epicafricanjewellery #fashion #newweek #beaded #beads #blackgirlmagic #melaninqueen #madeinkenya #melaninpoppin #african #africanfashion #africanart #africanjewellery #nairobi #jewellerydesigner #jewelery #jewelry #jewellery
How have you taken the shell of entrepreneurship? What sparked your interest to give a focus on African jewelry?
Entrepreneurship has been a very fulfilling journey as I have to learn and discover a lot about myself as well as meet a lot of great people along the way.
I was actually taught beading by Ms. Juliana Mukiti. She is an amazing lady who ended up being my mentor in my business. She has helped me to embrace my fears and discover more.
I have always been passionate about fashion from a very young age and when I was taught this, I fell in love and decided to explore more and get into it. I give focus on African jewelry because of the passion I have for everything made in Africa. It is about the richness and the authenticity that comes from different cultures. I saw it as an opportunity to make jewelry that embraces African art and style and can be appreciated all over the world, it is a way for the world to appreciate African culture.
Being a woman in business, how does it influence your business venture?
Being a woman in business especially in the fashion industry has been really amazing for me as it has been easier for women to trust me when I make customized pieces as I myself wear them and I have also got a lot of support from other women who are designers and stylists
What are your proudest personal and professional moments?
The is when I resigned from my job and I decided to venture into my own business. I was so happy. I didn’t know how I was going to even start, but I knew this is all I wanted.
What advice would you give a young girl aspiring to be an entrepreneur? Aspiring to be involved in fashion design.
My advice will be, don’t be afraid to start and take risks, don’t be afraid to show your work to people in the same industry and get honest reviews because that’s how you will be able to improve on your skills, and finally never give up, the best thing that will ever happen to you is failure because that’s how you learn and you get back up and continue
How are you addressing competition in the same market?
I have to say there is a lot of competition but what I always try to do is to make things that are different, am not afraid to take risks and also clients are a priority, I have to make them happy. When clients are happy and they trust you they will always come back and recommend you wildly
How do you ensure your brand stands the test of time and remains relevant?
My focus is to make pieces that are bold and contemporary, jewelry that any woman can wear. I always strive to reinvent my brand and make pieces that are very fashion forward
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@sharonneotieno looking absolutely gorgeous in this web necklace. EPIC is all about STANDING OUT #regram @l.eafar Faded into black. #makeportraits With @sharonneotieno Loved shooting @epicajewellery with her stunning array of handmade beaded accessories. . . . #fashion #epicafricanjewellery #igkenya #vscokenya #ig_muse #shadowhunters #shadow #fashion #fashionphotography
Looking back, is there something you wish you understand about starting your own business before you ever got started?
One thing I wish I understood is my market, the moment you know your target market it makes things easier on the kind of things you can make because when I started I used to make a lot of things which were not even selling so I was spending a lot of time doing the wrong things.