INTERVIEW WITH 18 YEAR OLD FOUNDER OF SPICE-UR-LOOK
Meet Ameena Shehu-Usman, the young change-maker behind Spice-Ur-Look, the company that helps people unleash the beauty in them.
Great to have you on Under35CEO today. Could you please introduce yourself?
How old are you now?
I am 18years old.
Tell us about SpiceUrLook. What is the story behind it?
SpiceUrLook was established in 2011 but was only into bead-making as at then but later introduced fashion design and Ankara accessories in 2012. Now we are focused more on ready to wear and customize tailoring. The name “Spice-Ur-Look” was a name given to me by a friend because of my creativity.
Were there people who discouraged you along the way? If so, how did you learn not to listen to the doubters?
I got discouraged by few people along the way but I had already dedicated myself to it, so all I was focused on was my aim. Moreover my parents have been supportive all the way.
What was the biggest challenge you face in starting your business and how did you overcome it?
At first, I was discouraged because there were so many competitors in the market but later on I realized I could make my style different and also my choice of fabrics. Along the line, I also had problems of finishing orders on time because I was the only one doing all the work so what I did was to find out how to make a list of how many clothes I can sew per week, so if the orders for that week is full I will tell my customers to wait till the following week so that they will not be disappointed if I couldn’t get it done early.
Did you always want to be an entrepreneur?
Yes, I have always wanted to be an entrepreneur. So I can say it is a dream that I worked very hard on to make it come true.
What are your fondest memories of childhood?
Having all the family around, it was really fun.
How has being a young person benefited your business?
Being a young person helped me positively because I’m growing up in the process and it’s also a great experience. I’m able to keep up with the trending styles for young customers.
What are your greatest achievements and most disappointing failures?
My greatest achievement is becoming independent at a young age and managing my company.
The most disappointing failure was when I was unable to please a particular customer and that was at the beginning of my career. After that, I was discouraged I had to stop sewing for about two months and was thinking if I could really cope with disappointment but later realized it would only make you get better and thank God it has not occurred again.
Your philosophy of life?
Time is limited. We should try to live our lives, impact others so as to leave the world a better place.
Why do you think lots of people patronize you?
I believe the main reason is because at Spice-Ur-Look, you will get a bespoke tailoring at a very affordable price, This draws the attention of customers to us.
Where do you see SpiceUrLook in the next 3 years?
3 years from now Spice-Ur-Look would be a very successful fashion outfit that would provide job opportunities for youths that want to go into this line of business.
What advice would you give to young people who want to set up their own business?
Well, nothing is easy. So the key to establishing any business is hard work. Know the type of business you want to do before venturing into it and make sure your parents are in support of your business. Though there will always be people who would discourage you along the way but do not give up. Always seek advice from people with more experience and don’t be afraid to ask for help.
What’s your thought about Under35CEO?
It is a great platform for self-employed youths and I believe it is a great opportunity for anyone to be featured here and share his or her experience.
In closing, how do you personally define success?
Success to me is what you have accomplished in life through hard work.
Are you a young entrepreneur under the age of 35 with an interesting story of success (or failure)? If yes, then the Under35CEO community has something to learn from you.
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