Written by: Janelle Emokpae
Dahalia Jackson is the strong-willed small business owner of Eden Natural, a boutique located in Boston, Massachusetts. She first immigrated from Jamaica to the United States in 1998, and since then she has been working her hardest to achieve her dreams of starting a business and connecting people all over the community. In this interview, she tells us about how she got her start, what makes her business unique, and her aspirations for the future.
1. How would you describe Eden Natural?
Eden natural is a lifestyle boutique that focuses on sourcing, producing, and marketing handmade designs and beautiful products that are globally inspired. My business provides a marketplace where people can connect and support unique expressions of style and engage with the community that appreciates cultural diversity.
2. When did you start your business?
I started my business in July 2009.
3. What made you want to start a business?
I wanted to start a business to generate extra income for myself and to teach other low
income women to do the same.
4. What products do you sell and create?’
I sell african inspired apparels, trendy seasonal wear, handmade jewelry and accessories, and personal care products like soaps, lotions, fragrances, and creams. I create handmade jewellery and personal care products like scrubs, body creams, and lotions.
5. What made you want to create a boutique?
I admire handmade products and I grew up seeing my mother, a dressmaker, designing and sewing clothing for her customers. My passion developed into me wanting to use my creativity to produce and provide these items for people. I knew there was a need for these types of products in the community which further motivated me to create this boutique.
6. How do you incorporate your own interests and ideals into your business?
The products that I select and produce are representative of my likes, passion, and appreciation of nature and global designs. I also developed an interest in formulating my own natural skincare products having used it all my life from the natural remedies we created in Jamaica. I make sure to add my own personal touch to each item I create and sell in my store.
7. What is your mission and what do you hope to achieve through your business?
My mission is to engage the community in a friendly atmosphere enabling them to look good, feel good, and do good. I hope to play a role in the community by offering a creative business that will give back to enhance opportunities. Helping others embrace their natural beauty and wellbeing is something I work towards each and every day.
8. What makes your business unique?
My business is one of a kind in the community due to my focus on importing and producing handmade and naturally created goods. I bring in products from small business owners in Africa in hopes to share the many beautiful cultures that it has to offer.
9. What are your responsibilities as a small business owner?
Because I run the business on my own it takes a lot of hard work. I have to manage the store, help customers with their questions and concerns, promote on various social media, and create products all while making sure everything is run with stability.
10. What motivates you to keep going with your business?
The response from the customers is definitely what makes me keep going. Seeing the energy and unity that my store brings makes all the hard work worth it in the end. My business makes it so I can make my passions and ideas profitable all while helping the community.
11. Would you ever want to expand out of your boutique and sell things other than what you sell now?
I want to expand to having a bigger online presence so I can serve more communities and connect with people out of Massachusetts. I hope to expand my collection and create things outside of personal care and jewelry items.
12. Where do you see yourself with your business 3 years from now?
Three years from now, I hope that my business will be able to generate more profit so that I will be able to expand and have a bigger impact.
13. If you had one piece of advice for someone just starting out, what would it be?
It doesn’t matter where you start, just start! Don’t wait for it to be perfect, just start and make improvements from there. Work hard and never give up on what you truly want to achieve.
14. Where can we learn more about you and your business?
You can find me on Instagram @edenatural and on Facebook as well! My boutique is located at 1882 Dorchester Avenue in Massachusetts, but you can always shop at edenatural.com. Thank you so much for this interview and I hope this gave you a bit more insight into what I do!