Today we’d like to introduce you to Keena Garcia.
Hi Keena, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today?
I am a 45-year-old wife, mother to 4 & grandma to 3 amazing children. I have been interested in sewing most of my life, always dabbling in something sewing-related. As my children were all headed to graduate HS I started thinking what I would do with myself after they “left the nest”. I went to work for an apparel company, they were in need of an experienced embroiderer. I had never done embroidery but had many years of sewing. I went to work for them and immediately fell in love with the embroidery process & knew I needed to get a machine of my own. My husband purchased my Tajima Embroidery machine and off I went… I started signing up for craft shows all of the state & creating beautiful things to sell at them. I feel like God has led me to this place. People started asking me to do custom embroidery projects for them, Youth Sports team items, Christmas stockings, small business’ that were in need of promotional items, etc…
I worked exclusively out of my home & did quite well. Once Covid hit I no longer felt comfortable having people come to my house, and all of the craft shows I would have attending were canceled. I started feeling a bit depressed and stagnant. I had no direction, so I began to pray. I prayed for guidance, I prayed for clarity. I felt strongly that this (sewing, creating beautiful things) is what God had planned for me, however, I couldn’t do any of that right now. I had a dream after praying that I was in a retail space with many of my vendor friends. I woke feeling like God had showed me the path. So, I started by calling 1 friend who makes jelly, I told her about my dream of opening an Embroidery / Gift shop, all handmade gifts from all over the great state of KS. I hadn’t even made it through my entire invitation before she said YES! I Felt inspired I began calling other friends and all 10 that I called unanimously said YES, some even sharing with me that they had been praying for some direction in their own craft business. I really felt like God had his hand in all of this. So, in the matter of 3 weeks, I had a place picked out, I signed a lease, had 10 vendors ready to move in, and was advertising a new Embroidery boutique OPENING SOON. We opened on April 1st. God is Good!!
It’s been a great time and the business is going great.
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
I have faced very few struggles. One has been not having enough hours in the day to keep up on all the embroidery orders that I have been blessed with. I am working on saving to purchase another embroidery machine to help with the workload. A challenge for me was learning to market myself and my business. I am not very tech-savvy, so figuring out how to keep the books straight & keeping inventory for many vendors. I have really learned A LOT in a very short amount of time.
As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
I am a self-proclaimed Embroider Extraordinaire… lol… I am very passionate about the work I do. I love what I do and feel very fortunate to get to do something I love every day! I am always looking for ways to improve. I am known for the quality of my work.
People feel confident bringing their work to me, that’s a big responsibility, I do not take for granted the blessing of every new & returning customer.
I love having a gift shop as well, not only to sell my creations but the beautifully handmade crafts of 25 locals.
Can you talk to us about how you think about risk?
This whole venture was a BIG risk. After praying and feeling like God showed me the path, I took a LEAP OF FAITH. We had no money in savings, we did not have the finances to support this business. I knew there was no way to pay the bills at my boutique if I didn’t make the money. That’s a HUGE risk. I literally choose Faith over Fear. I have often said I have a responsibility to not only myself & my family, but to the vendors here & God would not have brought me this far to have me fail.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: 3gembroideryks.com
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/3GEmbroiderybykeena/.