We had the good fortune of connecting with Melissa Brown and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Melissa, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
Prior to starting my own business, I was in a season where I was embracing alone time like never before. I’ve discovered the importance of self-care, picked up a few hobbies, and most importantly strengthened my walk with God. One of my hobbies and self-care methods consisted of writing. Because I was grad school, writing from research was already a huge part of my life, but there was something special about jotting down goals, expressing myself, and pouring my heart out on paper. As time passed, my values behind writing intensified. Some call it manifesting or speaking into existence, some may refer to the scripture Habakkuk 2:2: “Write the vision And make it plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it. No matter which way it goes, there is an undeniable power in writing. Not only is it therapeutic but one can really accomplish their heart’s desires by putting thoughts and a plan on paper. I wanted my business to encourage others to express themselves unapologetically just as much with this exact method. From this, I am able to pour into those by producing customized spiral notebooks, journals of many variations, and coming soon…planners. I am nowhere near where I want to be, but I am immensely proud of my growth and look forward to continued growth, particularly mentally, emotionally, and spiritually!
What should our readers know about your business?
B. Faithful was founded as a way to help plant seeds for the mental, spiritual, and emotional growth of people from various backgrounds. With stationary and inspirational apparel being the brand’s forefront, B. Faithful pushes others to embrace who they are, take charge of their lives, and express themselves unapologetically. What sets me apart from others is the deeper meaning and purpose behind my business name. B. Faithful was first inspired by my first name (Melissa), which stems from Greek origin, “honeybee.” The name B.Faithful represents the exhilarating essence of the honey bee while referencing the “land of milk and honey,” as mentioned in the Bible to symbolize prosperity. Milk and honey, or God’s blessings, correlates with the idea of the honey bee. In addition to this, the symbol of the bee is universal. This insect symbolizes hard work, community, joy, and abundance. Its size can be deceiving because it brings a powerful warrior spirit with dedication and wisdom to any task it has been assigned to. Not only is the bee known for its power, or “sting,” but its harmonious personality to accompany the light and goodness it possesses. Being faithful to yourself by making the time for you is also essential to life’s true riches. I am most proud of the leap of faith that I have taken. In true procrastination fashion, I’ve had the idea for quite some time…over a year to be exact. I didn’t know where to start though. The idea of starting a business seemed so time-consuming and expensive, and I honestly was afraid of failing. For a long time, I was creating products but more so for anyone in my close circle. One day, a good friend reached out to me and asked if I wanted to be a vendor for an event that hundreds of people would be attending. I had no inventory, no plan, not even business cards but I said yes. I worked day and night and within one month, I was able to produce everything in time for a successful experience as a vendor. Of course my preparation and resilience played a huge role but it was definitely not easy by a long shot. Over time, I have learned that you are never 100% ready for anything. No matter how much fear you have, do it. God did not give us the spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind. What’s for you will be for you. It’s up to you to catch that blessing, because if you don’t, that same blessing will go to the next person. I want everyone to know that you can do it despite your odds and circumstances. Also remember that yes, it’s a business, but your very first priority is to make a positive impact. If your goal of starting up a business or pursuing any dream comes primarily from money, you will be happy, but you will lack joy. Always keep your mission, values, and purpose in mind and I can guarantee you will see the fruits of your labor. I hope my story can encourage each of you reading this to live your lives to the fullest in every way possible.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I am a firm a believer in trying any and everything! All of my friends know that I would want them to take photos with me in a sunflower field, but invite them to go skydiving when we’re finished. For food, I would take this friend to House of Mac and Finga Licking for delicious soul food, Jamaica Kitchen for mouth-watering Jamaican food, and Sanguich de Miami for a Cuban sandwich to remember. Dessert would definitely take place at MadLab Creamery because their ice cream is to die for. If there’s still a sweet tooth craving, Sugar Factory for a candy cocktail would be the go-to. Some places we would visit throughout the week would be Monkey Jungle where the monkeys roam free (if you know me, it’s definitely my happy place), TopGolf for a quick game with other friends, and some museums when we are feeling artsy. Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), and Perez Art Museum are some of my faves. The Museum of Ice Cream is by far an Instagram landmark and definitely worth going at least once. If this friend is anything like me, we’d be all about the views. Going to Miami Design District and finding a parking garage or two is not your average activity, but wait until you go on the rooftops. These views are completely free and breathtaking. Additionally, I’d recommend Wynwood. What makes Wyndwood so special is that you can go day or night and get two different experiences. If my friend is in town during the Fall (likely September), going to Art Basel would be a requirement! Two other seasonal activities that I recommend would be Miami Carnival and Calle Ocho. Thank me later. 😉 As for lodging, The Guitar Hotel at Hard Rock in Hollywood would be my pick! In between activities, we absolutely cannot forget the beach. Bike riding, jet-skiing, volleyball…the list goes on on what we would do there.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would definitely say my village. We all have a celebrity or two who we are inspired by, but nothing at all beats the motivation than from those in your close circle. The amount of love and support I have received throughout this journey so far has been astronomical. What makes it even more special is that each loved one plays their own role but they all have been pushed out of my comfort zone in so many ways. From helping me with orders, to making purchases, to sending me valuable information to expand my business (e.g., podcasts, IG posts, YouTube Videos, etc.), I am beyond blessed to have them in my life. I really want them to know that just as much as they have my back, I have theirs as well, no matter what.
Other: Personal Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/melibrown_/