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Celebrating Our Female Founders

Women’s History Month, along with International Women’s Day, celebrates those who’ve pushed the needle and broken glass ceilings, often forging a path for other women to ladder to success. Entrepreneurial women have long been the momentum behind our country’s innovation, from Madam C.J. Walker’s hair care empire in the late 1800’s to Marie Van Brittan Brown's patent of the world’s first home security system in 1969. Without women, where would we be?

Their stories inform who we are as a community and inspire us to persevere, uplift, and become bad asses too. They inform who we are and Neighborhood Goods is proud to share the perspectives of some of the 37 female founders represented in our stores.

We asked some of our founders about what they’re most proud of and what keeps them going along with creating a collection, Female Founded Favorites, to make supporting these brands easy. Their responses are moving, earnest, and accurate portrayals of the ups and downs of starting a business from scratch and might even inspire you to start your own.

 

What is something you've accomplished in your business which you are most proud of?

“I am incredibly proud of the team that I have built. We have an incredible team of inspiring women that I look forward to working with each and every day.”

- Dara Weiss, Founder of L'or de Seraphine


Tarica Phung Navarro, Founder of KINN Home

“Because we operate on a triple bottom line basis of People, Planet, Profit, we were able to maintain our course last year despite launching right before a pandemic. Our metrics of success are driven not only by revenue growth, but also by how we choose to contribute to the community and give back. Having that balance is what keeps us going everyday when things get hard.”

- Tarica Phung Navarro, Founder of KINN Home

“With the help of my husband and now Co-Founder, Mir, we set forward with a mission to simplify routines and push for equity in the industry. Taking a look at the underlying skin concerns that are most common among people of color such as dark circles, hyperpigmentation, dullness, and more. I wake up everyday proud of the fact that we’re getting feedback from customers that we’ve actually listened and created a product just for them. There’s nothing more fulfilling.”

- Sara Shah, Founder of Journ

“We’re excited by our continued growth because our growth means that more artisans are receiving support that directly impacts their future and the future of families, children, and communities. That support has the potential to change the cycle of poverty — to change lives and change the world. SOKO supports over 2,000 independent artisans in 282 workshops throughout Kenya, impacting over 11,000 beneficiaries of revenue generated from sales."

- Jennifer Nakamura, Co-Founder of SOKO

“Launching a business amidst the pandemic, and especially one that gives back, is something we're really proud of! We launched three different products within the first 3 months, which was hard work, but we're excited for everything that's to come!”

- Echo and Tre Hopkins, Co-Founders of Ordinary Habit


Sara Shah, Founder of Journ

“I'm most excited about creating a loyal community that helps us drive positive change in the food industry.”

- Roma Patel, Founder of Tejari

“Producing incredible pieces that I really believe in and seeing girls and young women feel confident in these styles is the most rewarding piece of the puzzle for me. Getting into incredible stores has also been a huge highlight.”

- Frankie Burik, Founder of 8apart

"Being able to expand our business from Australia to the US and being part of Neighborhood Goods has really helped us with that journey!"

- Alyce Tran, Founder of The Daily Edited

“Connecting with other women within the wellness space and providing them with a platform to share their stories and personal power.”

- Lara Corey, Co-Founder of Smudge Wellness


Mercedez Pérez-García, Director of Merchandising + Partnerships for Raven + Lily

“We are incredibly proud of our relationships and our growth this past year. From our relationships with artisan partners, our clients and Raven +Lily teams. We are so honored to grow in sales and through our product categories as a sustainably minded company that translates traditional craftsmanship into current market needs.”

- Mercedez Pérez-García, Director of Merchandising + Partnerships for Raven + Lily

 

What piece of advice would you give your younger self?

“Don’t let fear get in the way.”

- Sarah Moret, Founder of Curie

“Self inquiry and reflection is key to growth and resilience.”

- Kerry Docherty, Co-Founder of Faherty

“Do not let your age or the fact that you are a female make you feel like an imposter or like you can not accomplish your business goals. Trust that you can do whatever you set your mind to and then work hard towards those goals.”

- Dara Weiss, Founder of L'or de Seraphine

“Keep working hard and going after opportunities that you don't think you ‘deserve’.”

- Nina Mullen, Co-Founder of Hilma


Dara Weiss, Founder of L'or de Seraphine

“The piece of advice that I would give to my younger self is to always get everything in writing.”

- Jaclyn Johnson, Founder of Create & Cultivate

"Be bold in everything you do. Don’t try to be so palatable to everyone else around you. Being a watered down version of yourself trying to please everyone, pleases no one."

- Emory Sittig, Emory Bee

“Don’t sweat the small stuff. When it’s easy to get bogged down with the small details, always go back to the big scheme and the “why” behind what you do. Also, I’d tell my younger self to not expect to be the expert in everything. This is a mindset I feel we all fall into – sometimes we really can’t do it all and instead need to seek guidance from mentors and those who have gone before us along the way!”

- Emmy Grimes, Co-Founder of Once Kids

“Be patient. Good things take time.”

- Roma Patel, Founder of Tejari

“The ability to make meaningful connections with other people and making a positive impact.”

- Lara Corey, Co-Founder of Smudge Wellness

Lara Corey, Co-Founder of Smudge Wellness

 

What propels you forward?

“Hearing from our customers! Building a business is hard. Every email, text, DM I get from customers means so much.”

- Sarah Moret, Founder of Curie

“My family. I started Kinn to replace the antique jewelry my parents lost when their home was robbed. And now as a new mother, I want to do better, be better more than ever, to leave a better footprint and to be a role model for my kids.”

- Jennie Yoon, Founder of Kinn


Nina Mullen (center), Co-Founder of Hilma

“Beautiful relationships with people.”

- Kerry Docherty, Co-Founder of Faherty

"I have so much hope for this incoming new wave of conscious consumerism. I’m excited to be a part of a movement of more thoughtful spending, where people are understanding more than ever the value of taking care of both their personal health and the health of planet."

- Emory Sittig, Emory Bee

“Working with smart, hard-working people on a problem I actually care about is the best form of motivation there is!”

- Nina Mullen, Co-Founder of Hilma


Emmy Grimes, Co-Founder of Once Kids

“Being self-funded and career driven. I think something that we hear a lot is that you need to be raising a ton of money to be successful, but I think there are pros and cons to being self-funded and pros and cons to being venture-backed, and a lot of women get hung up and obsessed on the idea: ‘I need to raise millions of dollars for my company to be legitimate.’ But I don't think it's the right path for everyone.”

- Jaclyn Johnson, Founder of Create & Cultivate

“My daughter, Eliza. I want to be an active part in creating the world where she can see herself being represented. We are very intentional of being inclusive by working with creatives of all backgrounds. In fact, she already watches ads we’ve made with South Asian creators and emulates them. In fact, she calls makeup “Mona”; as a reference to the name of one of our content creators we partner with at Journ.”

- Sara Shah, Founder of Journ



To discover the goods these founders create, head over to our Female Founded Favorites collection and shop the magic. If you want to hear more truths from these founders, tune into our IG (@neighborhoodgoods) as we celebrate their stories through out Women's History Month.


Please note some responses were edited for length and clarity.