We had the good fortune of connecting with Lehmoneisha Johnson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lehmoneisha, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
Honestly, I Quit My Job Making 20+ An Hour Because The Environment Was So Stressful. I Told Myself, If I Can Dedicate 14 Hours A Day/6 Days A Week To A Job Thats Stressful & Doesn’t Make Me Happy, Why Not Start My Own Business? Work For Myself. Make Myself Rich, Not An Ungrateful Company. Why Not? The Only Thought I Really Put Into It Was, “YOU CAN DO IT” & I Took It From There. I Initially Thought It Was Be Quick Flips, Easy Fast Money But Boy Was I Wrong. I Quit My Job December 2020, I Procrastinated For 6 Months, Somewhat Out Of Fear, Somewhat Out Of Market Over Saturation, Somewhat Financial & In June 2021 I Finally Took That Finally Leap Of Faith, Started With What I Had & Stepped Into One Of The Best Decisions Of My Life.
What should our readers know about your business?
I Own An Online Woman’s Boutique Named Apparel Bayou. It Was Originally Named Bayou Body Apparel But I Later Decided Apparel Bayou Was More Catchy. Born & Raised In New Orleans, LA Surrounded By Swamp Waters & Bayous, My Friend Came Up With The “Bayou” Idea Named After Our City’s Foundation. In New Orleans, We Have Our Own Style, Own Culture & I Wanted To Incorporate That Into My Business. What I’m Most Proud Of Is That I Never Gave Up! I Had No Job, No Steady Income To Fund My Business, Horrible Credit, A Single Mother Pulling Bunnies Out Of Hats Just To Make It To The Next Day & I Always Did. It Has Been Times Where Bills Have Been Past Due & I Took The Money & Put It Into My Business First Just Trying To Make It Out Of The Situation, Betting On Myself, Running On Borrowed Time. I Recently Gave Up My Home After 4 Years To Fully Be Able To Support My Business More Financially Because It Was So Hard Putting My Profits Back Into My Business. I Was Have Great Days, Then BOOM, The Bills Are Due. I Had NO HELP! No One To Help Pitch In So I Took The Necessary Steps Of Stepping Back For A Moment To Build Properly. Today I Feel Like Im Still In My Beginner Stages Of An Entrepreneur But I Am Extremely Proud Of The Decisions I’ve Made. NEVER Would I Have Thought It Would Be This Hard But I’ve Faced Every Obstacle Head On. The Sleepless Nights, The Inventory Sitting Too Long, Not Seeing Profit, Not Knowing When I’ll Be Able To Fund A Decent Inventory, Having To Choose Between Livelihood Today Or My Future. Ive Had A Million Breakdowns But Ya Girl Never Quit. I’m Actually Tearing Up As Im Typing This Because I’ve Never Spoken About The Struggles Outside Of My Head. One Of The Best Lessons I’ve Made Recently Was To GET OUT OF MY HEAD. SELF-SABOTAGING Myself & My Future By Overthinking So Much….JUST DO IT! I Would Like The World To Know That I Pride Myself On This Business. To Satisfy My Customers Is My MAIN GOAL Outside Of My Own Success. I’ll Go Above & Beyond To Make Sure I Dont Fail You All! Everyone Has A Sad Story But Mine Is REAL & Thats What I Give The People. No Matter What, KEEP GOING, It’ll All Work Out.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Being That I’ve Partied Hard During My Younger Days, I’m More Of A Calmer, Relaxed Person Now. Still The Life Of The Party But I’d Rather Visit Museums & Galleries. Things Like Exploring Great Food Spots With Chill Vibes & Great Music Is Where You Can Likely Find Me. Wine Tasting Is Another Activity I’d Definitely Take A Friend. Real Memorable Experiences Where We’d Take Great Photos To Look Back On.
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?
I Know It May Sound A Little Unfair But My Friends & Family Were Sort Of Expected To Be Supporters But To See So Many People Whom Don’t Know Me Personally Support My Business, Trusting Me To Deliver & Satisfy, Took Me By Surprise. I Would Like To Thank All Of My Friends & Family From The Bottom Of My Heart For Not Letting My Expectations Of Them Be Proven To Be Set Too High. To My Supporters, I Hope You All Are Living Wonderful Lives Filled With Peace & Prosperity. I Love You All!
Instagram: @BeeWhyAreDee (Personal) @ApparelBayou (Business)
Twitter: @BeeWhyAreDee (Personal) @Apparel_Bayou (Business)
Facebook: BeeWhyAreDee (Personal) ApparelBayouShop (Business)
Photo With 3 Women By @1_oneshot_ The Other Photos Are Personal Photos From My Customers.