Sparklefly Candle Company Spotlight on Etta + Billie

by Anne Marie Esposito, President and Founder, Sparklefly Candle Company, Inc.

In my ongoing quest to bring inspiration to your day; Sparklefly Candle Company has reached out to some other amazing entrepreneurs to share their stories and products. As always, I encourage you to explore these small business owners with me and remember to shop small all year round.

"Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much”
― Helen Keller

This week I deliver to you, Alana Rivera of Etta + Billie. After hearing so much about Alana through our overlapping business groups, I finally got the chance to get to know her better in the past few months and I have to say that now I understand why everyone has great things to say about her. I was thrilled to have the opportunity to share her inspiring story with you and her phenomenal handmade bath and body products. She also just received her Green Business Re-certification, GOTTA LOVE THAT! Check it out!

Q: Tell me about Etta + Billie and how you got started?
Etta + Billie is a artisan sustainable bath and body product company inspired by the beauty of northern California and it's bountiful food scene. I began creating natural products as a hobby while working at various office jobs that felt stifling and un-creative. Making soap and body care products became my creative outlet and passion. I would spend all my free time experimenting with different scent combinations and learning about natural ingredients. I took classes at the Nova Studio and read countless books. I felt compelled to turn my obsession into something I could share with others so I attended the California School of Herbal Studies in 2008 to further my education in natural healing and holistic methodologies. I launched my brand the following year. It has grown in such tremendous ways in the past 5 years!

Q: What is your favorite aspect about being a small business owner?
I can't pick just one! I love being able to control the direction of my business and my life. I don't have to check in with anyone if I want to create a new product, try something for a photo shoot, contact a new client or take a day off. I also love working with other makers on collaborative projects. It is so inspiring to work with others who are as passionate about their businesses as I am. I feel incredibly grateful for the freedom and creativity my business has provided me.

Q: What should a customer expect from Etta + Billie when making a purchase?
They can expect to receive an incredible product handmade with integrity, fantastic ingredients and a whole lot of love plus some GREAT customer service. I want my customer to have a positive experience from the moment they browse the website to finishing off the last sliver of soap. I hope that my products make each bathing experience feel like something special or bring up a wonderful memory or just help make their day a little better.

Q: What are some of your best selling products?
Soaps and scrubs are definitely in the lead, especially the Earl Grey Tea Soap, Peppermint Lime Soap, Grapefruit Cardamom Scrub and Ritual Roasters Mint Coffee Scrub.

Q: Who or what has been the biggest inspiration for you?
I think my biggest inspiration has come from the Indie Business Network and my local mastermind group, Creative Business League. I have met incredibly brilliant, driven, sharing and caring people (mostly women!) who inspire me every day. Donna Maria from IBN has infectious energy and passion for helping others succeed, it's hard not to be inspired by that. My mastermind group has provided me with the most amazing support network of business women. Each meeting and retreat is a wonderful space for celebrating each others accomplishments and working through business issues as a team. I don't think I could continue on my business journey without either of them!

Q: Do you have any special events or offers coming up?
I've got a few things in the works for the end of February, like a brand new exciting fancy membership club and a cult favorite limited edition soap. Be the first to know when they launch by signing up for my e-newsletter!

Find out more about Etta + Billie: