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Rising Stars: Meet Christina Vanderslice

Today we’d like to introduce you to Christina Vanderslice.

Hi Christina, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
Peace Organics started out as a way to supplement income for my family while still being at home with my three small boys. I started an Etsy shop in June 2016 selling abstract paintings but soon found that the art world was inconsistent with sales. Mostly, I loved painting for relaxation and I wasn’t fond of painting on demand. Peace Organics was born when making my homemade body lotion one day. I sat down and brainstormed what I wanted to sell and painted several large paintings that I hoped would sell to support my next adventure. I sold all three large paintings and closed my Etsy paint shop in May 2017.

I started an Etsy shop for Peace Organics June 2, 2017, offering handmade Body Butter and got my first order on June 10th. Sales picked up more and more as I educated myself on the ins and outs of the Etsy platform. Once November hit, the orders rolled in faster than I had ever expected. With the successful holiday season of selling just Body Butter, I geared up for the next holiday I thought I could really make a successful run at and that was Mother’s Day. This is when the first Peace Organics gift box was born. Mother’s Day was a complete success, and I earned enough money to move us out of our rundown mobile home and into a beautiful home with a basement, and this was where candles became the main focal point of our gift box. I worked on the candle recipe and design concepts and began selling custom-designed candles.

I ran the shop out of my basement until September 2019, when I finally moved into a medium-sized warehouse. COVID hit in 2020, so I created a cute gift box featuring a succulent and included a card that said “Quarantine Succs Without You”. Buzzfeed featured this gift box and we went semi-viral, selling thousands of those gift sets. With the success of the succulent box, I was able to move operations into the temperature-controlled warehouse that we are currently located in. During the Christmas season of 2020, COVID hit us hard with employees being out of work due to having to quarantine, supply chain issues began to affect us getting out orders out in a timely manner, and this caused the first rocky point for our business. Employees had to be furloughed in January 2021, and we had to scale back business in order to keep things going. Today we are still recovering, but I feel our challenges will bring us back stronger than ever.

With over 100,000 sales on Etsy, Peace Organics is among the top 10% of shops on Etsy. I would like to take my experiences and share them with other women to encourage and empower them to chase their dreams of business ownership. I know there are many stay-at-home mothers with wonderful, creative minds that believe they can’t start a business of their own, I am here to say you can, and if you believe in yourself, nothing will stop you!

We all face challenges, but looking back, would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
COVID has been hard on a lot of businesses, and I know how fortunate we are to be one of the companies that have rallied through it.

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know about your work?
People often ask me where I get my inspiration for the candle designs, and it’s usually created as something I would love getting as a gift or giving as a gift to someone. Recently, I added a women’s empowerment collection to the candle line and it has been one of my favorite projects. It’s something near and dear to me, and I want to spread that message to those who need to hear it.

Do you have any memories from childhood that you can share with us?
I had a neighbor who was moving, and they gave me a full box of paper and writing supplies. It was an amazing box of goodies like log and appointment books, receipt books, and my favorite item — a calculator that printed. I sat for hours pretending to be an important business lady, typing on my calculator, scheduling appointments and writing receipts. I guess being a business owner was always in the making, but if you asked that little girl what she wanted to be when she grew up, it was always a Marine Biologist. I had a fascination with sharks and ocean creatures and still do!

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