Small Business Sunday, shortened to the hashtag #SBS on Twitter, was created by Theo Paphitis in 2010. A passionate supporter of UK small businesses, Theo chose the social media platform to offer support and publicity to determined business owners. Each Sunday between 5-7:30pm, businesses can tweet Theo, explaining in no more than 140 characters why they would make worthy winners.
“I decided to start entering SBS a few months ago because of the fantastic opportunity for small businesses to get noticed. I love having the ability to pitch my business directly to Theo himself.” Explains Rachel. “If one of the country’s most successful entrepreneurs picks your business from thousands of others then you must be doing something right! It's really made me proud to be chosen by Theo!”
…and the winning tweet - ‘I started customising clothes 4 my kids from my bedroom & now my designs r stocked in Selfridges & Harvey Nichols #SBS’
The journey to business success has been far from smooth for Rachel, having been labeled as a ‘problem child’ at school, resulting in expulsion at the age of 14. Rachel had been suffering with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), a little known condition over 30 years ago. This was followed by a long period of staying with friends and living on the streets, culminating in Rachel falling pregnant with her first child at the age of 19 and her second when she was 24.
“It was clear that I needed to improve our situation and offer my family a more stable future.” says Rachel. “I had always been interested in fashion and I began to customise clothes, selling them online. As I was receiving more and more orders and beginning to make a little money, I decided to approach The Prince’s Trust and was awarded a grant of £1000 to start my own business. With the grant I created my website and built an office in my garden to work from. I’m now a proud young ambassador for The Prince’s Trust, sharing my experiences and encouraging others."
“Things are going really well, I even supply several celebrities and I now stock my designs in Selfridges and Harvey Nichols. The SBS win has given me a massive boost and I plan to spread the news far and wide. I’m so excited about the future – I’ve been introduced to a whole new network as a result of my business being given a voice by Theo, I feel I’ve achieved something truly inspirational!”
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About Crystal Mess
Crystal Mess creates clothes and accessories for both men and women, catering for all tastes. With customers including TOWIE stars, Fatman Scoop and Katie Price you know you are in good hands when it comes to quality and style. Our items use only the finest grade A foiled glass rhinestones to ensure the sparkle catches the eye of all passers-by. Crystal Mess can customise existing products to create the perfect gift or choose from our own range of ready-made bling! For more information email rachel@crystal-
Visit http://www.theopaphitissbs.com for more information on Small Business Sunday.