South Tampa woman finds success in soap | News
Tampa, Florida -- On any given day,you'll find Cynthia Jennings tucked away in her garage, blending, molding, and slicing her way to success.
"It just took on a life of its own," Jennings said of her natural soap company, Sweet Harvest Farms.
She's been making soaps from scratch for about ten years. The military wife has packed up and moved all of the pots, essential oils and packaging every few years or so, and now the persistence is paying off.
Jennings says her business just got picked up by a national distributor, which means her soaps, candles, lotions, balms and fragrances will soon be found in spas and boutiques across the country.
This means she'll be mixing up enough of her formulas to produce 2,000 bars of soap each month, in addition to the soaps she already produces for current clients.
You can find a bar of Sweet Harvest Farms soaps in boutiques throughout the east coast.
It's not just about earning a paycheck though. It's solving ailments like her granddaughter's eczema or a client's allergies to soaps.
"The thing about succeeding in business is to fulfill a need, so you need to find a void, where there is a need and you need to know how to fill it, then fill it," she explained.
Growth didn't happen over night for her and it took some time to find the right mix for her recipes which she says are all her own.
"The old cliche is finding something you love and then finding a way to make money at it," she said.
As she expands her small business, she's hoping to encourage other people out there to take that great idea and go for it.
"Take the bull by the horn and run with it. Don't let anyone tell you you can't do it, you've got to have a strong belief in what you're doing," she advised.
Her business is a family business with a strong support system that she says any successful business owner needs to have in place.
National Small Business Week is coming up this month on May 21st. To celebrate, the Small Business Development Center at USF will be hosting a series of workshops throughout Tampa Bay so small business owners can learn to expand their businesses at no cost to them.
Hillsborough: Monday May 21, 2012 from 7:30-10:30 AM
Pinellas: Tuesday May 22, 2012 from 9 AM- 1 PM
Hernando: Tuesday May 22, 2012 from 7:30-10:30 AM
Pasco: Wednesday May 23, 2012 in from 7:30-10:30 AM
Polk: Wednesday May 23, 2012 from 7:30 AM - 4 PM
Highlands: Thursday May 24, 2012 from 7:30 -10:30 AM