Today we’d like to introduce you to Elena Flores.
Elena, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Sew Bonita started out as a creative outlet when my husband bought me a sewing machine. My mother passed away in 2008 and never got the opportunity to sew with her or learn how to sew, and that’s one of my biggest regrets. But I needed to take care of a creative itch and that is how Sew Bonita was born. Sew Bonita is a reflection of my life growing up on the border of Texas and Mexico. I love incorporating colors, fabrics, and textiles to my creations along with t-shirt designs that empower women.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Being a side hustler is tough. It’s tough to balance a full-time job, a side hustle passion, and life in general. And I still struggle with that. But Sew Bonita is so much an extension of me, that I feel it needs to exist. I love being a side hustler, being able to create, cultivate the passion for my work and be a part of a community that embraces me.
It’s never too late to start a dream or go for that idea that has been haunting you. Take that first step, because it’s the hardest. Once you’ve taken that step, the rest is work and hustle. I’m in my 40’s, and I love that at this point in my life, I have found what is meaningful to me and what gets me going every day.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Sew Bonita – what should we know?
Sew Bonita is my brand and my side hustle. We specialize in hand-sewn products, along with t-shirts that empower women and celebrate being Mexican American. Living in Corpus Christi, TX, I’m bringing a little of the Texas/Mexican border here. We are super proud of being a part of a creative community that continues to support other small businesses so much that we have launched Loca for Local. I curate a quarterly market here in Corpus Christi where people can come shop, eat and drink all while supporting other small businesses. It’s such a special event and continues to grow so much that out of town vendors are joining us. This means they are eating here, spending the night here, thus boosting the local economy.
Being authentic and my true self is really what I take pride in. I love being me. Whether I’m being tonta, or serious, or emotional, I am me. And what you see is what you get with Sew Bonita. I’m like this in person. I’m like this on social media. It’s taken me a long time to get here and accept who I am, and I know others have journeyed that way as well.
We’re interested to hear your thoughts on female leadership – in particular, what do you feel are the biggest barriers or obstacles?
I know there is a sisterhood that exists. And I know myself, along with others, are always willing to help. But we have to continue to have those open arms and open doors for others. It’s so important that we be there to light each other up. When one grows, we all grow.
- Website: sewbonita.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @Sewbonita
- Facebook: @sewbonitacc