"The Maker" Series | Volume I: Sweet Water Decor

Meet Melissa.

She is the owner and CEO of Sweet Water Decor. A motivational and inspirational brand that shares their meaningful messages on home decor, makeup bags, mugs and stationary. They also make hand-poured candles infused with essential oils that will fill your home with such incredible scents.

I had the pleasure of interviewing Melissa and I am so excited to share her story with you. It's begins on a snowy night in her basement back in December of 2014. 

Taina :: When and why did you choose what you do as the creative field you wanted to pursue?

Melissa :: I've always loved design and retail. It chose me! I had a calling to start my own business back in 2012 but I didn't know where or when it would happen; but 2 years later, it happened! I have always loved numbers and art and it all just came together that one winter day when I opened Sweet Water Decor on Etsy.

Taina :: We all have those "dream jobs" when we're growing up. My little guy says he wants to be an Astronaut (fingers crossed). Was this your dream job growing up or did you have something different in mind for yourself?

Melissa :: I used to design clothes with my friends for fun and I even enjoyed going around and selling for fundraisers growing up. However, in my 6th grade graduation book I wrote that I wanted to be a designer, and well.... it came true!

Taina :: Where do you gather the inspiration you need to accomplish what you do?

Melissa :: A lot of it just comes to me! I love going comp shopping at Target, Home Goods and other stores to see what's trending in the market so that we can translate that into other products. It often sparks new ideas for the next year as well. We don't want to be like everyone else but we do want to keep on trend. 

Taina :: What does a typical day look like for you?

Melissa :: I start my day around 7am and get my 2 year old up and fed. I get to have breakfast and play with him until his sitter comes around 9am. From there, it's go time! I work as much as possible until lunch time and then I put my little one down for a nap. Then I work until 3 or 4pm when he gets up. We play and I make dinner and then I'm back to it. I usually work from 7pm until midnight most nights.

Running a small business isn't easy and it takes a lot more time then many think! Each day is different - some days I have meetings, some days I help out making our candles and other days you'll find me spending hours designing in Photoshop. When you run a small business you wear many hats and you're always "on"! 

Taina:: Wow! I can totally relate with your work day. Running a small business is a lot of work and you most definitely wear many hats. So now, tell me this. How do you stay motivated through all of the work you put in?

Melissa :: I love seeing our customer's reviews and how much they love their Sweet Water Decor. I especially love seeing it on Instagram where we get happy mail DM's and tags from customers with their products. 

It makes us so happy and keeps me motivated in designing what's next and in keeping our customers motivated and inspired each day!

Taina:: What advice would you give someone that is looking to start his or her own small business or Etsy shop?

Melissa:: BE YOURSELF! A lot of shops have copied us and that's no way to start a business just because you see another shop being successful. Find your own niche in the market and that's how you will become successful! You have to create your own demands, not someone else's. Stay true to YOU (not anyone else)!

Taina:: Which social media platforms do you participate in? Which of those do you like the most and find to be the most beneficial?

Melissa: We are mostly on Instagram and Facebook @sweetwaterdecor. We are on Twitter but that isn't much of a traffic driver for us. We enjoy interacting with our followers on Instagram and with the option to purchase right on Instagram, we have found it to be the best!

Taina:: Life presents us with something new every day in our lives (especially with toddlers, ha!), whether it's something big or small. None of us have life all figured out. Every day is a learning experience, right?! So with that said, what's the best advice on "life" that you can personally offer with us?

Melissa:: You have to take time to enjoy life. When you work for yourself you get to make your own hours. You can choose to stay up late and work or you can choose to enjoy a beautiful day and spend time with your family. Don't treat it as a 9-5 job where you have to start and end at those times. Enjoy life too! 

Taina:: What are your hopes and dreams for your business? Where would you like to see yourself in 3 years?

Melissa:: I hope to see us grow and have the continued ability to motivate and make others happy! In 3 years I would love to see our team grow even larger and become a more recognized brand in the market. 

Melissa, I can't thank you enough for sharing your story with us. I'm sure it will touch and inspire many.

From Melissa's humble beginnings to now serving over 65k customers and being in over 1,800 boutiques around the world; her goal continues to be to motivate and inspire her customers to live their dreams! 

Melissa also coaches small businesses on a one on one basis. She will be taking on clients starting March 2019 after she returns from maternity leave. She will also have coaching videos on her site, coming soon! If anyone is interested in this coaching opportunity click here.

You can shop Sweet Water Decor @ www.sweetwaterdecor.com

Be sure to subscribe to the SWD email list to receive 25% off your order by clicking here

Melissa also has an Etsy shop you can find by clicking here.

And you can follow Sweet Water Decor on Instagram and Facebook @sweetwaterdecor .

Thanks again Melissa and luvs be sure to check back soon for another inspiring feature on The Maker Series



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