Hi Sophie, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory
Gift giving has always been my thing. I’m constantly thinking of thoughtful gifts I can put together to surprise the people I love. But what’s a meaningful gift without beautiful presentation? I’ve always been obsessed with presentation whether it be that of a food dish, cocktail, coffee or a gift. Everything is just better with an A+ presentation. I started making gift baskets for my close family and friends on special occasions like engagements, birthdays, and baby showers, and they were always a huge hit. I never anticipated selling them because it was just something I did for fun. I would spend weeks brainstorming and deciding exactly what I wanted in each basket because I’m a perfectionist, so these gifts obviously had to be perfect and match the recipient’s taste. When COVID-19 started, I was halfway through my first year of law school at University of Miami Law. I had two incredible summer internships lined up after the completion of my first year, which both fell through due to the pandemic. So, I finished my first year of law school (the most stressful and busiest year of my life), had no summer job (bummer), and was unable to travel (*eye roll*). I had more time on my hands than I knew what to do with, so I decided to start thebasketblondie, my Insta Biz, and turn my gift baskets into something profitable. My sister came up with the name for my business, a close family friend created my logo, and my Instagram page was created. I quickly realized that people were missing out on many milestone celebrations because of COVID, but they weren’t comfortable hopping around stores to put together a gift. That’s where I came in! I created a bunch of birthday baskets, graduation baskets, baby shower baskets, gender reveal baskets and more over the summer. My Instagram following continued to grow through word of mouth and Instagram posts and it took off more than I would have ever expected. I figured this would be a fun thing for me to do in the summer to keep myself busy until my 2L year, but I couldn’t get myself to stop when school started again. It’s been a creative outlet for me and I love to see how happy people get when they receive their custom gift baskets.
We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as relatively smooth road?
Balancing my business while being a full-time law student has not been easy, but I’m a workaholic so it suits me. Seeing the reactions from my clients makes the stressful days worth it!
Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know?
All of my baskets are custom-made with so much love! I work with each client to create a personalized, special basket filled with things the recipient will love. I’m known for my presentation, especially my signature baby’s breath flowers that each basket is filled with. I wanted to do something to set myself apart from those generic gift baskets you can buy online, so the baby’s breath flowers became my special touch. I’m most proud of my patience with my business. Anyone who knows me knows I have very little patience and like to get things done quickly. However, I would never sell a basket that I wouldn’t be excited to receive myself, which often times means rearranging things over and over again and going to what feels like 100 different stores in a day to find the perfect items to fit my vision.
Do you have any advice for those looking to network or find a mentor?
I’ve realized that Instagram is truly a marketplace for anything and everything. I don’t necessarily have a mentor that has guided me through my business endeavors, but I do have great family and friends who are always hyping me up and spreading the word about thebasketblondie. In Miami, everyone knows everyone. One recommendation leads to another, which leads to another. Word of mouth and Instagram are powerful tools that have carried my business thus far. I feel so lucky to be a small part of so many special moments and celebrations through my gift baskets. I’m grateful that people trust me to create such important gifts for their loved ones, and I’m excited to see what’s in store for the holiday season. Whether you need a gift to welcome home a new baby, celebrate an engagement, bachelorette party, birthday or any other special occasion, thebasketblondie has you covered. Not sure what to get your in laws? Struggling to find something to give the person who already has everything? I’m your girl. Let me handle all your gift giving needs. My baskets are sure to leave your friends and families with big smiles on their faces.
- Baskets range from $60-$500
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @thebasketblondie