2021: A Year In Review From The Founder
Happy *New* Year!
It has been an incredibly surreal year for us. This was our first year as an official and full-time home decor brand!
Before we dive in to the past year, here is a quick background:
For those that may not know, we actually started off as a clothing boutique in October 2019. I had just arrived back from London, England after living there for a few years working and attending law school. I was so in love with the fashion, and overall culture, that I decided to start a small business carrying brands from Europe and the U.K. The initial idea was for this to be a side business that would be something fun for me to do with my family, while I was progressing through my legal career.
I have always had a passion for entrepreneurship, especially in the handmade and sustainable industry. Before I had left for England, my mother, grandmother and I had started a small Etsy shop making soaps, candles and knitted products. I was not able to continue the shop while I was in England, so I decided to bring that aspect into the clothing business I had started. We had such a great time working together and creating so many beautiful products. I could not wait to get started!
As the pandemic hit, my exams got delayed. This was not the news I wanted to hear, but I had more time to focus on building Aria. It certainly worked out for the best and I am now a firm believer that everything happens for a reason.
In March 2020, we had the most heartbreaking experience as my grandmother had passed away. It is just an indescribable feeling and we are still experiencing such a tremendous loss. We decided to name one of our dough bowls the "Maria" in her memory, and the "Filomena" dough bowl in memory of my great-grandmother.
By August 2020, the candle and bath products took off to the point where they became the business (we are so grateful!). By November 2020, we began to see our products in major retailers such as Winners, HomeSense and Marshalls. (Btw we still are in disbelief and sometimes cry when we go into stores and see our products). Still in shock from the early success of our new handmade line, we then made the decision to focus solely on home decor.
Bring in The New Year 2021:
Which leads us to 2021. The year we changed our name to Aria Home Decor and had the opportunity to go full-time with our business. During this year we have had some fantastic achievements that we only thought we could dream of.
From being featured for the first time in publications like Vogue, House & Garden and Vanity Fair, to partnering with Neo MasterCard, to building partnerships with more major retailers like Wayfair and The Hudson Bay Company. We have even partnered with 200+ independent retailers internationally, and launched House of Aria, our very own membership rewards program.
We went from creating and testing our products in our kitchen, to building an in-home studio, full of equipment and being able to hire some incredibly kind people along the way.
The amount of accomplishments, feedback and support we have received is overwhelming, and we have had so many moments where we have actually pinched ourselves. I think the quick pace of the growth of Aria has really surprised us the most and we cannot wait to see what is in store *hint ;)* for 2022.
The best part of this has been meeting so many wonderful people along the way and having the ability to interact with all of you one on one. I always try my very best to be active in our customers journey and that is something that is very important to me. If you ever need anything, never hesitate to reach out! I am always just an email or DM away.
Plans for 2022:
We changed our logo! We thought it was time for a more personal branding experience. Get ready to see some all-new and as always, sustainable packaging this year.
We have so much planned for the year ahead that we just cannot wait to share. Get ready for all new products, new retailers and hopefully some IRL engagement, because we would absolutely love to meet all of you in person!
We have so much love and gratitude for every single person who has shown us support and contributed to our journey. Thank you so very much from the bottom of our hearts! <3.
We wish everyone all the absolute best for the year ahead. Happy 2022!
- Love, Ellissa
Founder of Aria Home Decor