5 Questions with - Almost Always Vintage
Continuing with our partnership with Prism Creative and their Support Local initiative with showcases South Florida's makers and small businesses this week we are featuring Luiza Solano, owner of Almost Always Vintage. We love a good vintage find and Luiza is a master at mixing vintage and make it look fresh and new! Read below on why she decided to start her own business and make sure to check out her InstaGram and website as well as say hi to her at the next Miami Flea!
1. When did you make the big decision to start your own business? What inspired you? What scared you?
I made the big decision to start my own business when I was on unemployment for a couple of months in 2014. I went from having a full-time job and a weekend side hustle, to having more time than I knew what to do with. After some self reflection and soul searching, I decided to put my efforts towards a passion project I had been too chicken to ever seriously pursue. The thought of being 100% in charge of my time and life, and also the fact that I had even mustered up the courage to actually make it happen, was most inspiring. The scariest part? All of it! Jumping into a project with no formal training, just some passion, $1,000 and the promise to myself not to give up, definitely freaked me out! Not really knowing if I had it in me to see it through; that was scary too!
2. What has surprised you most about this process?
I knew that I was in for a bumpy ride with lots of surprises when I signed up for this journey. What has pleasantly surprised me, is how much one can create with “seemingly" so little; how my most creative moments have occurred when I've had to get real scrappy and resourceful. Another awesome surprise is that other individuals are rooting for me and are now looking to me as a source of inspiration. I guess that was always a goal, but it’s kind of crazy when you begin to see results of the hard work and time you’ve put into something.
3. What do you wish you’d known before starting your business? Any advice for future small business entrepreneurs?
No one really knows what they’re doing either, so trust that you’re capable of figuring it out along the way too. You will learn and grow as you go with every mistake you make and obstacle you overcome. Another huge thing to know is that,believe it or not, you can't do it alone! Don’t be too prideful to ask for help. Your friends and family want to help out and are proud be a part of your journey.
4. Where do you go in Miami when you’re looking for inspiration?
Miami has limitless inspiration! I use my neighborhood morning walks to reset my mind for the day and take in the surrounding nature. I declutter my head so there's room for new ideas and potential breakthroughs. I also try to avoid highways when I can—driving on local roads makes it easier to fully take in the city. I am constantly pulling over to snap shots of cool buildings, colors, plants, garbage, whatever! Journaling in the park, a good beach day, going out for lunch to a new spot in a neighborhood I’m not normally in; those help to fill the inspiration tank. Concerts or performances and a couple long nights of dancing are necessary every once in awhile too!
5. What local group or business do you look up to?
I’m really into what Prism Creative Group is doing for Miami. I am constantly in awe of all the work they do and all that they accomplish. They are hardworking girls on a mission to showcase Miami's cultural potential!