What inspired the creation of Mission Lane ?
Welcome to Mission Lane!
We are here to curate merchandise to you, the girl who will never lose her sense of style, will never lose herself, and will never lose her MISSION.
I always had a vision of having a store, but didn’t really have a concept or foundation to base the store on and I thought that was important to have. I knew that fashion and helping others was important to me, but wasn’t sure on how to merge the two. I wanted to show an example of how important it is to help others and that you can still be your fashionable self while doing so.
I’ve always been inspired by the women in my family that despite everything they might endure they always come through and never forget others, inspired by my grandma who lives on Mission Lane in Bonthe, Sierra Leone. She represents hard work, love, sacrifice and determination for better.
What led you to pursue entrepreneurship?
I've been working in the fashion industry for about 10 years now and I’ve learned so much about how to work with clients and how the industry works. When things started to shakeup at the office aka people were getting let go that was the turning point for me. I saw these people dedicate so much of their time and just like that they were gone. I had been living in NYC for about a year now and I had a conversation with my boyfriend now husband about starting my business and he made a comment about putting action behind my words. After that conversation I started a google doc with every detail possible and never stopped. I did a lot of research on starting a business, took online/in person classes, found a mentor, and started following businesses on social media to get an idea of how they put everything together without having an actual store front. I also had a friend who was in the process of launching her own business (Mylittlemagicshop.com) and was highly influenced by her.
"I’m an aficionado of Oprah's Super Soul Sunday and a few weeks ago she was speaking with Yara Shahidi. Oprah defined freedom as “being able to wake up in the morning and decide for YOURSELF what you want to do for the day”. That has stuck with my ever since. That’s exactly what I want!"
What is the Alta E. Lawrence Education Scholarship?
It was started in January 2017. My grandma Alta, who is almost 100 years old was a teacher on Bonthe Island for 20+ years. For years she helped children outside of her family receive their education. In return I hope to do the same one child at a time! The scholarship is available to students currently enrolled in school on Bonthe Island, Sierra Leone who need assistance in furthering their education.
In addition to the scholarhship, through your purchases & support, Mission Lane provides back to school supplies, winter accessories to families in need, and helps a young lady close out her senior year of high school by attending prom!
What is the best business advice you have ever received?
The best business advice that I ever received was to launch my store online. I would meet with my mentor about once a month and try to convince him as to why my vision of Mission Lane would work better as a storefront vs. online. He convinced me that financially it was in my best interest being that this would be my first time starting a business and it wouldn’t cost me much to get it started and I could learn how to run a business. 2 1/2 years later here we are, still growing and learning. Honestly I’m so happy I took his advice and that he didn’t back down, BUT I’m still dreaming about my storefront. #prayersup
What advice would you offer to aspiring entrepreneurs?
I’m notorious for asking people for their thoughts/advice but what I’ve learned is that you can listen to what advice people give you but you have to do what’s best for you. Everyone has different experiences, I always listen but just because something did or didn’t work for them doesn’t mean the same outcome for you.