TRANSFORMING A CRISIS INTO A NEW DREAM
Jessica had no business experience but that didn’t stop her. Inspirational stories from other women pushed her to believe in herself and trust that she could also achieve her dream of owning her own brand. “The inspiration of other women I read about in magazines saying when you have a dream you can achieve it was a big push for me. To think that I am here in my house, and I can do it too. I started researching and designing, and when other people liked my designs, I started to feel that there was something great here that I could inspire with.”
After designing her first sneakers, she wanted other women and mothers to also be able to enjoy the comfort and original designs she couldn’t find in other stores. She looked for suppliers and resources to start her small business and began working with a factory in Colombia.
CONNECTIONS WITH OTHER ENTREPRENEURS
Before joining Centro, Jessica didn’t know how to establish her business, and she was worried about the unknown and failure. Thanks to the programs she attended, she was able to learn about the areas of business that she did not know about, such as the mission and objectives of her business and its financial status. It has also been very important for her to gain confidence in talking about her brand to others, especially on camera.
“What fascinates me is also the networking and meeting other entrepreneurs, knowing that you are not alone and sharing experiences of our businesses. It’s a really nice community and I feel accompanied.” says Jessica.
DIVERSIFYING AND EXPANDING HER BUSINESS
With her business established, Jessica is now raising awareness of her 2QTooCute brand. In addition to her shoe line, Jessica has also launched a line of handbags. “My 100% Latina shoes are inspired by Latina women, giving it the color and flair that we put into everything. I also have leather bags where I use a lot of our essence, transmitting the strong colors that we as Latinas like so we don’t go unnoticed.”
She currently works with her sister-in-law, who is in Colombia and manages the factory they work with there. Jessica makes the designs and chooses the leather and materials for the manufacture of her bags and shoes. In her day-to-day work, she faces challenges that she overcomes by working together with the factory’s employees. “That teamwork is what excites me, I listen to them and they listen to me. It’s a chain, we work hand-in-hand, if I design, they work, and that’s how we share.”
Because of the pandemic, Jessica has not been able to attend many fairs and events to showcase and sell her products. So, as the situation improves, one of her goals for this year is to have more presence at these events to make her brand more known. Another goal is to increase her sales and increase the variety of designs to continue expanding her brand.