The Story Exchange, Velma Crawford, Veez Ties That BindYour Name: Velma Crawford

Business Name: Veez Ties That Bind, an apron designing company

Type of Business: Arts & Entertainment/Clothing & Accessories/Design

Business Location: Forestville, Maryland, United States

Reason for starting
Creating and designing aprons were initially only meant to be a hobby used as a means of healing and remaining focused during a time of a serious illnesses. Some of which I continue to suffer from. After showing my aprons to several of my friends and family I discovered that they loved them. They not only appreciated the functionality of the aprons, they especially appreciated and love the mixture of colors, patterns and designs, and especially the time taken to construct the garments. Within a very short time a friend recommended that I contact Marga Fripp, owner, CEO, and Visionary of Empowered Women International-EWI. After an interview with Mrs. Fripp and her staff at EWI; she and the staff members loved my aprons and further appreciated them as works of art. It was during my interview with the members of EWI that opened my eyes to ways in which to use my aprons and the stories in which they stem from to create a business and ministry opportunity. Doors of opportunities opened that allowed me to help others financially and to use my stories as a means of encouragement and inspiration.

How do you define success?
Success to me is discovering the substance or niche inside you and developing it to a passion. As you grow within and develop your passion it’s important to help others and give back to your community.

Biggest Success
My biggest success has been enduring and overcoming many serious medical issues. During my recovery, I discovered and developed my calling/gift and developed a business/ministry. Through my purpose I have grown and developed in ways that would not have been possible working in the regular white collar environment I’d grown accustom to for thirty years.

What is your top challenge and how have you addressed it?
My number one challenge is remaining focused and motivated to create. Another top challenge is developing my market through several Social Media. Last but not least is finding financial resources to keep my business up to date.

Who is your most important role model?
My most important role model and motivator is and remains to be my maternal grandmother and my father. As a small girl my grandmother and dad were the mirrors held before me that help me to see and appreciate the person inside me.