Ceri Hoover Bags
Tell us about your business.Born with a designer’s eye and a passion for creating, Ceri Hoover is constantly evolving. The 37-year-old entrepreneur first shared her talent with the world when she launched home decor company, Cooper Grey, in 2008. Back then, a pregnant and “nesting” Ceri taught herself to sew because she couldn’t afford to purchase the designer fabric she coveted. When her sewing practice sessions yielded a room full of pillows, she threw them in the car and sold them to retail shops. Her customers wanted more, and a few years later, while making cowhide pillows, she decided that same cowhide would make the perfect clutch, and voila, Ceri Hoover Bags was born. In just 8 months, Ceri Hoover Bags have found their way onto the floor of 40 stores and counting, and have been spotted on the arms of celebrities like Marisa Tomei and Kristen Chenowith. Ceri has set her year-end goal at 200 stores, and a five year goal to be a household name in the designer handbag industry.
What makes your business stand out?Ceri Hoover Bags are meant to complement a person's style, rather than define it. Never was that aspiration more apparently successful than at a trendy restaurant in Nashville, where she spotted the exact same bag on two vastly different arms. One arm belonged to a twenty-something hipster, sporting horn-rimmed glasses and a fully inked left arm, and the other belonging to a fifty-something former debutante from the country club scene. It is not often that these two women would find themselves with the same accessory, but the Ceri Hoover Bags fit each ensemble, effortlessly and elegantly. Manufactured in a small, family-owned factory in nearby southern Indiana, Ceri Hoover bags are sourced, designed, and built all within a 200 mile radius, and Ceri inspects each and every piece before it is shipped to the customer.
What's the best business advice you've received?Get over the fact that it has already been "done". You are not re-inventing the purse. Just make it yours.
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