Kesha Linder is the reason I love vintage clothes today! Her sense of style and amazing photos of her vintage finds are my outfit inspirations. Kesha served in the US Air Force for 4 years. Now she is a Brand Manager by day and running a successful vintage business, Karomel Sundae VC as her After 5. Read more about Kesha and why she is out Boss Profile today.
Brand Merchandise Coordinator at Davaco Inc
Her After 5:
Karomel Sundae VC
I am originally from Warner Robins, GA. After graduation, I served 4 years in the US Air Force in which I was stationed in England and Oklahoma. After the military, I went back to school and obtained an Associates degree from AIU in Fashion Marketing, a Bachelors degree from Kennesaw State University in Business Management, and I am one semester away from completing my MFA from Academy of Art in Fashion Merchandising.
What services does your business offer?
Karomel Sundae VC sells vintage clothing with a fashion forward perspective. We provide styling, virtual styling, and personal shopping services as well.
Why did you start this business?
I couldn’t get a job in fashion after college. I was highly frustrated with the rejection. I always wanted to open a boutique but didn’t have the funds for a brick and mortar and I loved the idea of selling vintage clothing but with a fashionable spin to it. I would buy a lot of my vintage items from eBay so I decided to open a store on this platform in 2010. I later created my own website in 2012 with the help of my big brother Maurice.
Why did you enter into this industry?
I’ve loved fashion and creating outfits for as long as I can remember. My dad and siblings love telling the story of how as a child I would change my clothes 4 to 5 times a day.
What challenges did you face launching your business?
I have faced the challenge of gaining traffic to my website and also balancing creating a brand with making money to actually survive.
What experiences did you learn from corporate America?
I worked for the Gap Inc brand Piperlime which was an online boutique type store. The same issues the brand as facing was the same issues I was facing but on a smaller scale. I would pay close attention in the meeting to how they wanted to approach gaining traffic to the website or how they would use Instagram to promote the new ideas and products. I would take this approach and apply it to Karomel Sundae VC.
What helped you transition from corporate employee to entrepreneur?
I am still in transition. I would say I have one foot in corporate and one foot in my brand.
What tools do you use to help manage your business?
I use selling platforms such as eBay, Etsy, depop, and We Buy Black to sell my merchandise. I use social media channels such as Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter to promote my merchandise.
I mail off packages, merchandise and post items to selling channels, and I plan future styling and other projects.
If no doors open for you, create your own door! -unknown
3 Things in your purse you cannot live without:
1. Hand sanitizer- If you live in a city and commute you will know why!!
2. Metro Card- My funds to commute
3. Headphones- Some morning I need a little inspiration to start my day and most of the time my inspiration comes from music.
Advice I would give to my younger self:
I would tell my younger self that this journey will not be easy by any means. But this journey will take you took a lot of different places and you will have a chance to meet a lot of different people. Please don’t give up and don’t let anyone make you feel like you are less than or worthless.
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