This week I'm excited to begin a new series on Thrifted! Women of YEG will feature local business ladies and today I'm ecstatic to introduce Janna Stewart. Janna is the creative brains behind the Edmonton based fashion label Cinder+Smoke. Janna creates beautiful, vintage inspired pieces and crafts each one herself. Raised in Brandon, Manitoba - Janna moved to Edmonton to enroll in the Fashion Design Program at Marvel College. Cinder+Smoke began with a small collection of one-of-a-kind t-shirts but has grown into one Edmonton's most beloved fashion labels. During the summer you can find Janna at some of Edmonton's local markets. Find her interview below!
Why did you decide to start Cinder+Smoke?
I've always loved making clothing and I've always wanted to be my own boss. It started as a side project, I would design and sew out of my tiny apartment kitchen every night after i got home from my day job. And from there it somehow became my actual job. I'm still not too sure how that happened! I feel very lucky to be able to make designing clothing my full time day job. Honestly, it's my dream job.
What inspires your designs?
Fabrics. I love stripes, florals, polka dots, plaids, weird squiggles, bizarre colour combos. When I find a really interesting print it always inspires the design.
What is the most difficult part of running your own business?
The most difficult part is realizing that you can't do it all. It's very easy to work all the time when you have your own business. There's always something. It's only in the last year or so that I've been able to just put it down and take some time off.
What advice do you have for those looking to start their own business?
Be realistic. Like I said, you can't do everything. Also, find a great graphic designer, photographer and someone to design and manage your website.
What's your favourite part of running your own business?
I love being able to make my own hours! Cuz, some days you just need to sleep late.