We had the good fortune of connecting with Shatora Chappell-Gouthia and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Shatora, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
The thought process for starting “Once Upon A Gem”, stemmed from me having an opportunity to be artistic, creative and entrepreneurial.I have the pleasure of searching for clever and unique items, thus pulling those items together in an attractive container to create a charming presentation that delivers infinite satisfaction to the giver and the recipient. We are firm believers that a giver should be able to gift without the barrier of pricing.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Once Upon A Gem,” was born from the support of family and friends who saw talent in me that I didn’t see in myself, thus encouraging me to steward the talents and resources in which I was gifted. I have always had a passion to create. In 2018, I utilized my passion and artistic vision to create a few gift baskets for my family and colleagues, in turn sparked a consistent client base for gifting.I founded “Once Upon A Gem,” on a promise that no matter the cost of the gift, we will deliver outstanding customer service and attention to detail(elevating each gift into a “gem.”) My specialty — and what I’m known for — is Once Upon A Gem’s ability to execute my clients vision through custom gifting arrangements.I love what I do! Each of our gifts are special and unique, as we get the opportunity to learn so much about the recipient based upon a theme or specific items chosen. “Every Once Upon A Gem has a Story, “ is not only our slogan but our mission as we highlight memories that truly represent the recipient. With our “gems” we strive to create stories that inspire others to gift thoughtfully, this premise is what sets us apart from other businesses in the gifting industry. We believe that each gift(“gem”) is a story waiting to be told and we can’t wait to tell yours. Entrepreneurship comes with as many rewards as it comes with challenges, whether establishing your company’s brand, beating the competition, or making a profit.Choosing to becoming an entrepreneur and maintain my career as a Special Education Counselor has it challenges. I have to ensure that I am equally devoting time to business, family and career. Also, This is an incredibly competitive industry. One aspect that surprised me when I entered this industry 2 years ago was the amount of competition that’s out there; therefore, countless hours are spent to ensure that our products stand out and I am are offering the best quality products to our clients at an affordable price point.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Favorite Women Owned Businesses to support in the city Closet 84 By: Nikki A is a boutique that specializes in outfits that make a statement. A great boutique to shop for unique items. Boss Women Media is a platform for women that provides tools and resources to assist women with excelling in their careers at different levels. Ashley N Cash is a resume assistance business that strives to teach others how to compose resumes that will allow companies to hire them and pay $100k. TaylorMade4U provides custom party and event decor as well as custom gifting items to create a unique and one of a kind experience apart from other creative businesses.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My family has been my greatest source of inspiration as an entrepreneur. My family has been a sounding board to bounce ideas off, point out when I’m off the course, encourage me when I face challenges, and to cheer me on when I succeed has been invaluable. My family has played such a pivotal role in the success of my business today and I am extremely blessed and grateful.
Shatora Chappell-Gouthia iPhone