Entrepreneur Spotlight: Vayda Girl
A few months back we stumbled upon a local small business that we are thrilled to share with you. Vayda Girl Headband is the headband for the every day woman, whether you're going to yoga, running errands or going out with friends. The headbands have an edgy, vintage look that can make any outfit. Creators Jessica and Audrey encourage their customers to design their own headbands, making it a personal experience and a way to share one's own style. You choose from five different styles (knotted girl, twisted girl, turbid girl, bow girl and classy girl) and then pick your print. The turn around is quick and we can guarantee you will be satisfied. Vayda Girl Headbands are also available for purchase in yoga studios, boutiques and hair salons in Rhode Island and Boston.
To learn a little more about Jessica and Audrey, check out what they had to say when we interviewed them.
Tell us about your company
We (Jessica Cooper and Audrey Johnson) founded Vayda Girl Headbands in March 2014. We wanted to offer a product of quality – something that fit perfectly, was trendy but with a vintage vibe, and that included more of a customer experience. This vision led to Vayda Girl Headbands – handmade to order headbands for the yogi, trend-setter, or chic city girl.
“Vayda Girl is for the modern woman who loves a good vintage throwback. And to be honest, it's a way to chic-ly hide hair either down or pulled back that may be in need of a wash and style. This is a great way to look good without having to put in a ton of effort.” Caitlin Gambee (The Examiner)
We believe that individual style should be exciting, fun, and evolve. Our business is here to let our customer decide what that is for him/her. We love helping our customer enhance his/her individual style by offering a platform to design a personal headband. Our website prompts you to select a print and then a style, and the headband is made to order.
The energy behind Vayda Girl headbands was generated through a love for creating and for bringing out the confidence in all women. Our inspiration comes from an array of funky to classic fabrics found in a variety of places.
What was your background prior to starting Vayda Girl and developing your headband line?
Our backgrounds are in Marketing, Management, and serial entrepreneurship.
What was the tipping point that led you to entrepreneurship?
We (Jessica Cooper and Audrey Johnson) founded Vayda Girl Headbands in March 2014.
We have always had a love for trendy accessories that have a vintage feel, and had been searching for a great fitting headband that also looks great. When we could not find exactly what we envisioned, we created it! We started wearing our headbands to yoga, around town, to work - and everywhere we went people would ask us where we purchased our cute funky headband. Based on an unexpected interest from our network, we started selling them, and that is the simple organic start to our fun start up! We purchased fabrics, and started to play around with them, and after much trial and error, we had 6 styles we truly loved.
What obstacles did you overcome to get where you are today?
Besides wrapping our heads around creating a website, the legal needs of a new entity, deciding our business model, logistics and pricing, our obstacles really stem from being a two-woman show with a lot of other responsibility on our plates.
We want to grow faster than our time allows, and want to respond to every opportunity to get our name out there, but sometimes we truly do not have the time or resources. We are learning how to manage this better, but it definitely comes with long nights and weekends. We wouldn’t trade that for anything – it feels so good to watch something grow, we can’t stop now!
Which social media platform do you think has worked best to build your brand?
Instagram. We had an Instagram account before we had a website. We were able to create a powerful Instagram community which naturally led to the need for a website to better manage interest and sales.
What are your plans for the future?
We have always had big dreams and love to talk about how we visualize our life (lives) shaping up. This start up is no exception – we want to grow Vayda Girl so we can continue to see the excitement of new women (and men!) designing their own made to order headband.
Do you have any advice for up and coming entrepreneurs?
We think it’s all about mindset. We love to think aloud about businesses we could start, how we would do it differently that what already exists, and how it really isn’t that hard to create a successful product if you truly put yourself in the consumers head. *and by that hard, I mean, we fully recognize how much effort goes into creating something out of thin air, but we like to think that if you really set your mind to understanding the user, it starts to come together on its own. We are lovers of brainstorming and envisioning the final product, and I think that natural inclination has allowed us to really follow this through.
So our advice, put yourself in the customers shoes – what would you like your experience to be if you bought X product/service? Once you determine what experience you would like, you create that, and people who share that same ideal will become a follower of your product/service. Like attracts like – you don’t have to please everyone. Be true to your vision, and you will attract those who support it.
Jessica and Audrey have been friends since Jr. High School and grew up in Warwick, RI. Audrey currently resides in Rhode Island with her three small children and Jessica in the North End of Boston. Jessica has lived in Boston since graduating from UMass in 2009, and has a full time job based in Boston separate from this passion – she also teaches yoga when and where she can squeeze it in. Audrey is a super-mom of three beauties and has no lack of energy when it comes to managing her family, business, and visualizing the future of Vayda Girl. Jessica and Audrey feel very lucky in their relationship to each other and are excited to continue growing their brand together.
Here are ways you can connect with Vayda Girl!
And of course, check out their cute headbands at any of these locations:
- Tropical Gangsters, clothing and accessories boutique (375 Thames St. Newport, RI)
- David-Max, home goods and artist boutique (187 Main St. East Greenwich, RI)
- Salon X, hair salon (3087 Post Rd. Warwick, RI)
- Glistening Goddess, spray tan and consignment shop (65 Weybosset St. Providence, RI & 622 Killingly St. Johnston, RI) *COMING JULY 28th, 2014!
- North End Yoga, yoga studio offering apparel (256 Hanover St, Boston, MA)
- Savas Studios, clothing and accessories boutique (456 Hanover St. Boston, MA)
- And various festivals, craft shows, and farmers markets by season.