*Can we meet you?
I‘m Favour Samuel, a graduate from the Department of English Language in Bowen University. I am an entrepreneur; I make ankara crafts.
*What kind of Ankara crafts do you make?
I make Ankara and jean bags, foot wears and accessories. Although I use more of Ankara for my works.
*What’s your brand name?
My brand name is Phaviesparks.
*Why did you choose this as your brand name?
I was expecting this question. Anyway the idea behind ‘PhavieSparks’ is that whatever is made / designed by Phavie (my nickname) must spark. You know when something sparks it means it’s noticeable, catchy and attractive. As I said earlier, I am creative and there’s no way creativity is not attractive and appreciative.
*How long ago did you start the business?
Well, I started when I was in my first year in the University. Then I used to help people wrap their phone case with Ankara material but I didn‘t really go into it fully but it’s been 4 months since I fully started the business.
*Did you learn this craft on a professional basis or how did you acquire your skill?
I started by watching YouTube videos in order to learn the basics (accessories and wrapping). Later on I went for a two weeks Ankara works training to learn about Ankara bag and shoe making.
*So far what has your customer base been like?
Hmm I’ll just say my customer base is still average but I believe there will be more customers soon. The business is still fresh and grown in fact it’s not yet fully established. However for a business that is just 4 months old, I have quite a good customer base. All thanks to God.
*Can you tell us your experiences since you started your business?
Generally, I have come to realize that business is not as sweet and easy as everyone thinks it is. There are times that one will have to go broke to achieve something in the business and there are times when people just keep ordering and that can be quite satisfying. One thing I know is that in business there will be several experiences. Those experiences helps one to grow.
*What are your future plans for your brand, do you want to practice the craft for a living or get a paid job?
Wow! I want to practice this for a living. This is my passion. I enjoy what I do. I love creating stuff. I’m a really creative person so I’m always eager to create something new and bring ideas to life. My plans are to make my brand go global; I don’t just want my brand name to be known I want to leave a mark. I mean I want people to see my works and just know its PhavieSparks work and I want to use my brand as a medium of promoting the beauty and versatility of African prints and our culture. If one observes some of my works one will notice I play with fabrics, like I experiment with different colours, patterns and shades of fabric to show how beautiful the African print can be. I would also love to get a paid media job. I want to be an On Air Personality.
*Are your craft works already made and ready for sale or you wait till your customers tell you what they want then you make it for them?
My customers tell me what they want then I make it for them. Sometimes, I already make samples of my craft so that people can choose from my concepts.
*In the case where you have already made samples of your craft don’t they get wasted if people don’t buy these already made ones?
Well, that has never happened though and hopefully it will never happen. *Laughs*. Most customers have no idea of what they want; they are undecided. They want to see what you have previously and if they love it they’ll buy it. For example if I tell someone that I make Ankara bags, the first thing they will ask for is past works or samples of my work. I have to show them something to let them know my capability. To be frank customers have more confidence patronizing someone who has done a job before.
*So what materials do you use for your craft?
Smiles. I use African prints, jeans, industrial gum, and a sewing machine (optional for Ankara works). The rest I can’t tell unless one wants to learn *laughs*.
* What’s your biggest challenge since you started?
I can’t really say a particular thing has been my biggest challenge but one of the challenges has been meeting up with deadlines when I have a lot of orders in a week. Don’t get me wrong, I always meet up but the stress involved as customers increase. Right now I just pray I’ll find someone that can assist me. Someone that is not money conscious who is passionate about the work knowing fully well that a lot of people out there don’t want to work and get paid. I’m taking my time for now.
*What is the highest number of orders you have had in a week?
*Do your parents support what you do?
Yes, they do and I’m thankful to God for that.
* What advice do you have for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Go into a business you have passion and interest in. Stay true to yourself. Keep pushing no matter what; invest as much as you can into any business you want to go into. Make sure that the first thing that comes into your mind is your customer’s satisfaction before the money because customers make you get more customers. Also have role models in the area of business you want to go into so that their steps can motivate and inspire you. In addition, always pray and depend on God.
* What motivates you?
What motivates me majorly is the picture I have in my head of how far I want my handwork to go.
* Can you share that picture with us and how far have you gone in achieving this vision?
Wow, I see my brand going far in not only bags but foot wears as well. I want it to get to a level that I just design my stuffs and people buy. I mean they won’t have to tell me what they want; just like Michael Kors bags, there will be PhavieSparks bag and shoe. My crafts will be branded. Recently I just started going into foot wears and I’ll go into it fully by the middle of this year or before then by God’s grace.
*How can prospective customers contact you?
My business instagram page is @phaviesparks while my personal page instagram page is @its_phavie.
*Thanks for joining us on StacySpeaksBlog.
You are welcome and I am thankful for the opportunity to be here.
*You welcome do have a lovely day.