Hey there—It’s Kate, owner of Sky Trading Co. with my next edition of Sky’s the Limit, a blog of Q&A-style interviews featuring women entrepreneurs from Columbus, OH. I know it’s been a while since my last blog post, but I’ve been taking time to readjust to a full-time job while running my side hustle. Both have been amazing and rewarding, and I cannot wait for you to see what’s in store for this year! I’m also hopeful that this next blog post will inspire you to live fearlessly. Enjoy!
I couldn’t be happier to introduce you to Katya Philmore of Splendor Revival! Katya is a girl after my own heart, collecting and curating magical handmade and vintage goods. Splendor Revival is a lifestyle brand that encourages women to savor ordinary moments while feeling magnificent. Katya believes that those ordinary moments seem a bit easier to find when you look and feel like a queen. Follow Splendor Revival on Instagram, and be sure to visit Katya’s adorable studio space at 400 West Rich Street. You can shop her pieces by private appointment or during Franklinton Fridays, a community wide event showcasing local art and science that take place every second Friday of the month. Below is Katya’s story and advice for young entrepreneurs and wannabe bosses…
Can you describe Splendor Revival?
It’s a lifestyle brand and shop that carries vintage and handmade caftans, maxi dresses and other unique items, including home goods, accessories and purses. My mission is to carry items that inspires color and delight in people’s lives. My business is a true love letter to women. I want to help women indulge without feeling guilty.
What or who sparked your interest in fashion?
My mom is my original fashion icon—when she was my age she was put together, graceful and unaware of how beautiful she was. I've always been a tactile person and I love to create things. In middle school I taught myself how to sew by making up-cycled handbags out of jeans for my friends.
How would you describe your customer?
My customer is someone who’s not afraid to be a little daring. They don’t feel like they need permission to put on something that’s a little bit unconventional.
When did you decide that you were going to start your own business?
I started working on Splendor Revival when I was doing corporate social media marketing for a major footwear retailer in Columbus, OH. Splendor Revival was my creative outlet. The day I decided I was going to start my business was Valentine’s Day. I was scrolling through Instagram and I saw an inspirational quote that said ‘create the things you wish existed,’ and it clicked for me.
Going back to the early days, can you tell me about the process of launching Splendor Revival from concept to reality?
It wasn’t methodical. The process was organic, and I kept what I was doing a secret for a long time. I slowly collected things, and it was created through a lot of small moments in-time. I had a cocktails and caftans-themed birthday party where I told my friends what I was going to do, and they loved it. I hosted a shopping party at a historic house in German Village and it was very successful. Then, I vended at Community Festival and I was hugely successful. That's when I realized Splendor Revival wasn’t just a hobby, and it’s been a year since I opened my space at 400 West Rich.
Did you have any fears before you launched?
I feared that people wouldn’t respond to what I was doing. You don’t see a ton of people in the Midwest or in central Ohio wearing caftans, so it was a big gamble for me.
For the dreamers looking to start their own business, what advice do you have for them?
Feel the fear, push through your doubts and do it anyway. You don’t have anything to lose—there’s a lesson in everything.
How did you fund your business when you were first starting out?
Everything has been bootstrapped by me. In the beginning I invested my paychecks in inventory. When I make money now, I always invest back in my business.
What is your favorite social media platform and do you have any tips?
Definitely Instagram. I don’t think people utilize the rule of thirds enough. Composition is everything. When you take a picture, look at what’s filling up the frame and make sure you have something interesting in each third of the picture. Be intentional with how you are composing your photos. Natural light is key.
What has been difficult about owning your own business? What has been rewarding?
Self-discipline and procrastination. Being your own boss is great, but you have to know how to manage your time. Clothes are such an emotional thing because it changes the way you feel, so the most rewarding times are when someone falls in love with a piece.
What do you want people to know about what’s next?
Splendor Revival is a lifestyle brand, so there will be a lot more workshops and other interactive events that encourage positivity and growth. I’m also working on a self-care handbook that I can’t wait to share.
What does self-care mean to you?
I want to encourage women to take time to make space and find out what makes them feel good, and learn to prioritize those things without guilt. I’m all about shedding shame, indulging and taking care of yourself.
Let me know if there is anything you are curious about or think I should ask during my next interview in the comments below!