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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Tootsy Interiors and more - Oluwafunbi Fatore #inthespiritofenterprise

Hello fam! Again today I have two entrepreneurs to showcase, both ladies are "onise owos" crafts women in simple english. They turn fabric into useful products. We'll start with the interior designer cum events planner.

Let her introduce herself and share her story - straight from the horses' mouth!


Tell us about yourself

My name is Oluwafunbi Tokunbo Fatore. I am an Insurer by day, interior decorator and events manager by night.

I am happily married with 2 adorable children. My personality is that of a quiet and private person but I am a fun loving person, enjoy shopping a lot and I am a go-getter.

I am the chief responsibility officer of Tootsy Interiors and more services.

Tell us about your business

Tootsy Interiors and more services is an interior decorating and events management outfit. We have been in existence for quite a while now. For our interior decoration arm, we make fitted bedspreads, duvets, throws, furnishings and curtains to various customers’ specifications especially using color preferences.

Our expertise falls in the expanse of rendering consultancy services for clients in assisting to organize their events, manage and coordinate them.

How did you get into this line of business

It all started when a certain wealthy aunt was having a birthday party and we all couldn’t think of something really nice to give her that she doesn’t already have (You for call Trezorlandia naa). It was a great task ahead of us, but later on that day in my room, it just occurred to me that we could give her a bedspread. Not just an ordinary one but a customized bedspread, different from what she could be used to.

Then, we thought of a pattern, and went off to the market, picked a nice fabric, got laces, ribbons and elastic, and then got a tailor to get the exact design we had in mind. On the d-day, we wrapped it beautifully and presented it. Unfortunately, we forgot to put our name on the wrapper.

A week later, when my mum saw her, she asked if she liked the bedspread, and she was like ‘wow’ she liked it, and even laid it on her bed immediately she opened it, but couldn’t find the name of the giver. She asked to know where we bought it from and could bet it cost quite a lot, but proudly my mum made her realize we made it specially for her. She then requested for another one, but that this time, she was willing to pay for it.

Subsequently, for the next set of functions we have had, we made and gave out different sets of bedspreads, and the responses we got were always the same. One day, God just gave me this idea, that we could actually make money out of this concept and that was how we started the interior decoration business.

For the events management and consultancy arm of the outfit, it has always been there right from youth. You see, my mum is a master planner, she has always had her hands full; she was either planning for someone’s engagement, or wedding or birthday or graduation just name it; that was when I picked up the interest. I guess the saying an apple never falls far from the tree is true.

After school, some of my close friends and I decided to form an events company, and I went for training and certification in event management. We planned a couple of events before we all went our separate ways.

Later on naturally, when it was time for my sister’s introduction, I took it as an opportunity to start off. So I was the event planner for the ceremony. I also coordinated my own wedding, which saved me cost and gave me more experience which I used in planning my sisters’ wedding.

What inspires you

My inspiration comes from what I hear, what I can see, my past works, and my intuitions.

When my clients appreciate what we do for them, I am inspired to do more.

What are the main challenges you have faced and how have you overcome them

Unfortunately in the past, we have had clients who could not pay for our services on the onset of the job and still refused to balance off afterwards, this has led to unbalanced books and a lot of debt which has affected our stock and purchase orders. Due to this, we have made decisions to only give credit to those who have been faithful or credit worthy.

Another challenge we faced was delivering by hand through public transport, this brought about a lot of stress until we were able to purchase a utility vehicle for this purpose.

We also faced the challenge of creating awareness for our products and services, but we are currently looking for ways to position ourselves in better ways through mediums like; print media advertising , though we did a couple of that, but we had to stop because it was not bringing in the much expected clients.

Funding to expand is also a challenge. We intend to have our own fabric factory where we can make our own designs and give our clients the opportunity to come in and choose what they want for their homes or offices.

How do you balance your business with your day job

It’s a passion, so after my routine work, when I get home I work sometimes till late to get some things done. When I get urgent orders, I just pass it on to my partner and things get moving, in which of course decisions are coordinated.

Also; I attend to my family needs, and do some work before finally retiring for the day. I also work on the weekends, as they are my main free days and I ensure things are moving on as expected and properly coordinated.

How will you summarise your journey so far

Hmmm, surprisingly tasking because I thought it would be easier at first; but I find it enjoyable as nothing is more fulfilling than going after your passion.

Given another chance, will you do this again

Over and over and over again.

You know you need to change those sheets! Contact Tootsy Interiors;

Call - 08026589268 , 08099000854 
Add - 7B01F026