Ideas aren’t everything, execution matters greatly, but starting often requires an idea and so we asked folks to think back and tell us the story of how they came up with the idea for their businesses. We’ve highlighted some of our favorite stories below.

Sylvina Bravo | Writer, Stylist, & Entrepreneur

Shop The Sylvie started off as a joke with my sister and cousin. We were sitting at a cafe and I jokingly suggested we go into business together. While they weren’t very excited about my idea, they said “well why don’t you just do it?” After all, I inherited a lot of my mother’s clothing from the ’80s and 90s, I was a hand-me-down child, and have always had a love for all things vintage: music, movies, shows, art, fashion, and furniture. So I ran with it. One year later, in Sept 2021, Shop The Sylvie came into fruition. I sell vintage closet essentials from the 80s and 90s. Clothing varies from designer to trendy pieces of the decade. Read more>>

Miranda Baxter | Treat Lady Training

Ultimately, it was my students. They not only gave me the idea to start my own business, but even pushed me to do so and came up with the name. I cannot put into words the love and support that went into the decision to start Treat Lady Training; it truly took a village. Like many dog trainers, I started out working in the corporate and franchise worlds. There are many wonderful things about those business models and I’m grateful for them because they allowed me to learn and grow over the years. Read more>>

Angelia Daniel | Speech-Language Pathologist, Therapy Product Creator, Mentor

I have been a speech-language pathologist for twenty-eight years. I have always enjoyed creating therapy materials for my students and clients. When the COVID-pandemic forced schools to close across the country and go to remote learning, I dove into teletherapy. Immediately, I realized that there was a lack of evidence-based materials for children with severe communication disorders and children with autism to utilize during this time. Therefore, I started creating engaging stories with functional objects and parent activities for my students and private patients. I would drop the stories and materials on their doorsteps that we would use during our teletherapy sessions. Almost immediately, I saw increased engagement from both the children and parents. Seeing children’s communication skills blossom while using my stories, I decided to fulfill one of my professional dreams to create and publish my line of speech therapy materials, The Functional Language at Home and School Series. Read more>>

Victor Carrillo | COO GLUPGURT

Glupgurt is a full powdered meal, initially conceptualized as a drinkable yogurt powder intended to supply the social community programs of the government, armies, navy, emergency plans, schools, hospitals, etc. Due to its characteristics, Glupgurt is developed to meet up to 2 years of expiration without refrigeration, providing a very good solution to easily reach the most remote places in the world avoiding logistic problems and cooling chain. However, while developing the product we realized it had enormous potential in the retail market. Therefore we started to work on branding, packaging and marketing strategies to meet this goal. Read more>>

Kelly Willbanks | Owner of Rea Rea J’s

When I started this business, I had just gotten into sewing. My kids were six months old and two and I was frustrated by the lack of boy girl matching outfits. There were a million cute things for girls but all of the boys options seemed way too casual or way too fancy so I started making my own outfits for them for Holidays. I wanted something cute and could be dressed up or down but that my son was also actually willing to wear so comfort was super important. When I showed them to friends, so many people encouraged me to sell them so I jumped in. Originally I just had bows in my shop but after the feedback on the outfits, I really leaned in to making that the focus of my shop. Read more>>

Germanie James & Markeela Hampton | Owners

We are a family who loves to cook and have fun in the kitchen. Two of our favorite childhood meals were hotdogs and sloppy joe. One day we decided to make our own recipe for sloppy joe and it was a hit! My sister and I looked at each other and instantly said, “This would be great on a hotdog!” That is how the concept “Sloppy Dogg” came about. It’s not a hot dog, its not a sloppy joe, its a Sloppy Dogg.” 🙂 Read more>>