This year, Minneapolis hosted the Black State Fair from August 23rd through the 29th. Entrepreneurs and business owners gathered to foster community ties and promote small business support. Minneapolis’ very own Turqouya Williams debuted her newest business venture, Soul Sistas LLC MN. Established in July of 2020, Soul Sistas is a clothing and accessory line with a focus on highlighting and empowering womxn, specifically black womxn.
Their mission: to create and maintain space for black womxn’s health, wealth and pursuit of happiness.
Here’s what the up-and-coming CEO had to say about her experience:
Overall, how was your debut at the Black State Fair?
“On my first day, I was super pumped up with an abundance mindset. I didn’t know what to expect and how the community would respond to my products. The day began and the customers started approaching our table. We got a ton of great feedback from attendees and we actually almost sold out the first three days we attended! We ended up selling out of our Safety Sets by 4pm the last day of the fair. We had back ordered products being delivered the day of the fair and had to restock to meet the need. It was an invigorating experience...it spoke to the need for these types of self-defense items for womxn.
"When you are a small business owner starting out, you’re unsure about how folx are going to perceive your brand and your products. I think they were well received and I’m excited for what the future holds for Soul Sistas."
“Soul Sistas connected with so many vendors and event planners as well as some activist groups. It was dope to chat with the Bikers against Police Brutality whose mission is to protect the people during protests and they stand in solidarity. They have been keeping peaceful protesters safe at multiple Twin Cities events for a while now.
“The vibe of the Black Entrepreneur State Fair was highly motivating and embracing for me. When you are a small business owner starting out, you’re unsure about how folx are going to perceive your brand and your products. I think they were well received and I’m excited for what the future holds for Soul Sistas!”
What does Sistahood mean to you?
“To me, Sistahood is about uplifting, empowering, encouraging and amplifying each other in every capacity we have. Sistahood is important because there are womxn who believe we are in competition with each other and I’m just not in the business of that. We can ALL win. There are difficult times when we need to have conversation and connection to heal. There are happy moments when we laugh and celebrate our successes. That’s what Sistahood is all about.”
What motivated you to start your business during these unprecedented times?“Walking through the world as a black woman professional, I have encountered some barriers in work spaces that were not created with me in mind. Knowing that for most of my adult life, I’ve always said I would explore entrepreneurship one day. The Pandemic allowed me the space and time to start crafting and creating ideas. It all started coming together and it’s been a great decision so far.”
How have you been able to maintain a positive attitude amidst these times?
“Healing through Introspection has been a huge growth point in 2020. I’ve learned about radical acceptance and that things just are what they are sometimes. All I can do is try to adjust my lens to capture the positives that can be embedded in bad times. I think we should take these months of pause to reflect and do better. Clearly, our world needs it.”
About UsSoul Sistas is dedicated to empowering and highlighting black womxn. Our goal is to create and curate a safe space specifically for black womxn. This is a company made by black womxn, for black womxn. Three principled pillars are at the core of this mission:
Secure Your Crown (SYC)Everyone has a crown to secure. No matter what one’s gender, race or class is, we are all royalty. Manifest your goals. Focus on positive vibes and uplifting messages. This pillar is all about self-love.
Protect the Throne (PtT)Safety is an essential element to thriving in this day and age. We stay connected and informed within our community to endorse preventative protective measures. Along with promoting black gun ownership, Soul Sistas provides stylish and useful safety accessories.
Respect Her Majesty (RHM)
This pillar celebrates black beauty in all its diversity. Beauty has no skin tone. It can be found and made in whatever we choose to focus on. Join us in celebrating the differences, accomplishments of our Sistahood.
Soul Sistas has an event scheduled for October 3rd. Stop by and say hello!