We had the good fortune of connecting with Jasmine Tolbert and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jasmine, how did you come up with the idea for your business?
The idea for my business came from my my affinity for drawing and sneakers. One day I was go alone and came across an old pair of all white Air Force one’s and I thought “It would be fun to add some color to these”. I customized my first pair then and the rest was history! From that point on I started following other sneaker and apparel artists to cultivate my ideas and started to build my brand. The name “The Major Effect” was inspired by my son Major. I thought it would be a great legacy to leave behind for him one day.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
As an African-American woman I am most proud of making my mark in an industry mostly dominated by men. I’ve seen so many female sneaker customizers since I’ve started and it’s been such an inspiration to see so much talent and entrepreneurship. As far as what sets me apart from others I would like to think that my attention to detail separates me from most. I want my customers to have an experience when they bring their ideas to me. When someone orders something custom it’s unique to them, and if I can help them bring that to life then I’ve done my job. My slogan is “Walk Away Different” and I strive to help every individual do just that. Professionally I’ve gotten to where I am through taking the opportunities in front of me. I started out customizing shoes that my family had around the house, and putting pictures of them on social media. I converted my personal Instagram into a business account and from there I started to receive order requests. I was very nervous to customize my first order outside of my family but when it turned out great I was inspired to do even more. It definitely wasn’t easy coming out of my comfort zone but it was well worth it. I learned to overcome my fear of failure by trusting in myself, watching YouTube videos to learn more skill sets and just applying what I’d learned. The lessons that I’ve learned long the way are to never give up. Keep pushing until something amazing happens and that it’s ok not to be perfect. Mistakes are how you learn and grow. I’ve also earned that people and word of mouth are your biggest assets. Don’t be afraid to jump out there and get some opinions, it can only help in the long run weather it be positive feedback or negative. What I want the world to know about my brand and story is that it’s ever evolving. It’s always growing and changing for the better. I’m in the business of people and making it all about their wants and needs and if I can continue to put smiles and a little bit of creativity into someone’s’ life then I’ve done my job. The Bible says that without a vision, the people parish. I see The Major Effect as a global entity and my vision is to help the world to walk away different.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
One of my favorite spots in the city to hang out is in city centre. It’s got live music an restaurants and shopping! A one stop shop for all of your vacation needs. I’d also have to drop by turkey leg hut, the food is amazing. To top things off I would head to showboat to catch a drive in movie.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My inspiration comes from my biggest supporters, my family. When I first started this business I doubted my talent, I’m a bit of perfectionist and starting something completely new in uncharted territories was a bit scary but my mom, dad, and my brother pushed me to keep going. They constantly remind me to perfect my craft and specifically to write down a vision for my business. My grandparents have given me great business advice on patents and ways to market myself. They’ve shared a number of my posts on social media as well! Last but not least my husband has been my biggest cheerleader. He is also an artist who specializes in canvas and logo design. I go to him for advice on every pair I design! He bought me my first set of shoe paint! He’s taught me I much in a short amount of time. I am truly grateful to have such an amazing support system.