Welcome to our first Women in Biz Q&A series. Through these monthly interviews, we hope you will be inspired to pursue your passion and encouraged to support other women of faith in business. We are delighted to introduce you to the lady behind Pearls of Parchment.
Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I’m Sara, the face behind Pearls of Parchment; designer and owner. I love creating and designing, especially to encourage others. My husband and I live in a small town in central Illinois. We love traveling to see God’s creation, summertime walks, and spending time with our families and friends. I enjoy anything outdoors, working on crafts and projects, and helping others.
So tell us how did you get started designing napkins? And when did you begin?
Good question! A friend of mine randomly mentioned something about designing napkins with scripture and the fire was ignited! It’s been an exciting adventure and learning curve the past year and a half.
What’s the inspiration behind your shop’s name?
When I think of God’s Word, I see it as a precious pearl that I have found to live my life by. Through my napkin designs, I hope to share those Pearls of Parchment with others.
In what way has starting an online shop been a leap of faith for you?
I have never owned a business nor did I dream I ever would! And yet God opened the way for me and I am so thankful that I have been given the opportunity to take that step in faith by creating a business that can be a spiritual encouragement to others.
Who has been most inspirational in your life and why?
My parents. They taught me of this pearl: faith in God. They have shown me how to live my faith, work hard, be honest, put others first, and to always remember to lay up treasures in Heaven.
What has been one of your greatest struggles with launching or maintaining a business?
It’s a balancing act owning a business! How much time do I put into it? How can I keep it something I love doing and not make it a “job”? The phrase “the more you put into it, the more you get out of it” and the blessings I have felt have been worth it!
What are your favorite items in your shop?
That’s a hard one. While I design and sell the napkins in my shop, my dad, who lives in Minnesota, makes all our wood products listed on Etsy. He has an amazing talent and I love the personal, handmade touch he gives each product. My favorite is his wooden ash bark dish; each dish is unique and rustic. Perfect for wrapped candies or little treasures 🙂
My favorite napkin would be the white, navy, and green vine design that states “In every thing give thanks”. A simple and clean napkin with a special reminder for every day! (Wanda here see my favorite design below)
What is one thing readers may be surprised to learn about you?
Even though I love to travel, I get homesick super easy. Sometimes even before we leave! Once I know we only have a day or two left in a trip, I want to be home RIGHT now. There is no place like home!
What has been one of the best pieces of advice or wisdom that you have received?
Do what you love and love what you do.
Is your Etsy shop your full-time job or side hustle?
Side hustle; some days it’s a hustle more than others!
How long did it take to receive your first sale?
One day 🙂
How do you manage running a business with your other responsibilities?
I am a list maker. It’s not uncommon for me to have 3-4 different lists on my desk. I like to start the week out by making a list of items to accomplish both on the business side and in my personal life. Nothing would get done around here otherwise!
What advice would you give to other women who may be dreaming of starting a business or following nudge from God?
Walk by faith. Take one day at a time. And pray often!
What are your favorite go-to scriptures? Can you recommend other sources of encouragement? (books, songs, blogs, podcasts, magazines, other resources, etc)
A faith strengthening verse I read in the beginning stages of Pearls of Parchment was Acts 20:32: “And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified”.
It’s my prayer that God’s words of grace found on Pearls of Parchment napkins can build others up to receive the inheritance! Some of my favorite chapters are Ephesians 2, Hebrews 13, and James 1.
Needing encouragement each day? Check out the Verse for the Day Calendar put together by our close friends who also have a love for seeing God’s creation. They do a beautiful job of selecting meaningful verses and pairing them with their photography!
How can readers connect with you online?
Pearls of Parchment napkins are available for retail on Etsy and Amazon. Also, my napkins are available for wholesale if anyone has a gift or home store, floral shop, religious goods store or any other store that would be interested in carrying our products. I would love to hear from you! Email me for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Whether you’re planning a holiday dinner, a women’s retreat, or a simple gathering with friends one of the napkins from Pearls of Parchment will be a lovely addition to your tablescape. Sara generously sent me a complimentary package of napkins. And these napkins are even more beautiful in person and the quality is impressive as well. All of her designs are lovely but my favorite happens to be the one featuring Ecclesiastes 3:11 He hath made everything beautiful in his time. Wouldn’t those look lovely on your Easter table?
If you would like to add a splash of inspiration to your table, Sara is giving BCW readers a special discount. Visit the Pearls of Parchment shop on Etsy and use code: CHRISTIANWOMEN10 to save 10% on your order today through March 1st.
Want to win your very own bundle of 4 packages of designer napkins from Pearls of Parchment? Simply visit Pearls of Parchment on Etsy and heart your favorite item in her shop between 2/21/19 and 3/1/2019.
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Wanda is the owner and editor of BCW. She's on a constant quest to seek the one who fills this thirsty soul. A lover of God and seeker of wisdom and never too far from a good book. Lover of tech and enjoys helping beginner bloggers set up their new blogs