In today’s post, we have a guest! Please welcome Sophia, owner of Sincerely Sophoula business. Sophia resides in San Jose California, and I am so happy to sit down with her virtually and talk all about her business.
If you are looking for handmade Greek-style calligraphy sign designs and knick-knacks, Sincerely Sophoula is the place. Make sure to check out her wonderful Etsy shop here.
**Don’t forget to check out Sophia’s favorite Greek recipe which can be found below.
Featured Post- Sincerely Sophoula
1. How did you start Sincerely Sophoula business?
SincerelySophoula began when the rest of the world shut down, I lost my job as a saleswoman in the print industry and was prepared to work at any job I could get. Being bored and stuck at home, I needed a creative outlet. I decided to challenge myself and came up with a 30-day calligraphy project. It was Springtime so I had a few Easter-themed art projects on the list. I posted all of my favorite projects on Instagram, including some Greek Kalo Pascha Wooden Eggs, and they caught the attention of one of my friends. She ordered three, and I was shocked! I knew I was onto something here. No more silly art projects – it was finally time to take my passion for Greek culture and calligraphy, and share it with the world!
The response was beyond my wildest dreams! Greeks from all over America were requesting custom signs that meant something to them. I realized I am not just painting ordinary signs… I am creating home decor that inspires people and gives them a new and creative way to connect with their culture.
Since then, I’ve made all kinds of projects such as wedding decor, personal prayers, logos, tattoos, holiday decor, Greek sayings, song lyrics, and more! SincerelySophoula now gives people a way to connect with their culture through home decor and express what being Greek means to them.
2. What is your inspiration for the art you create? Anyone special you look up to?
My inspiration comes from my family. My Big Fat Greek Family lives in California, Greece, Canada, and Australia and each person inspires me in a different way. For example, my Yiayia Stavroula in Canada taught me the importance of prayers and the church, and she is the reason I started my line of custom prayer signs. My cousins Nikki and Vasili in California showed me how to stay true to my culture in this modern America. My parents and boyfriend are my number one fans, and my entire family is rooting for me.
3. What is your favorite creation so far? Why?
My favorite creation would have to be my Taverna Signs. They are so unique and they’re such a fun way to bring the taverns in Greece into your home. They also make for an awesome gift! One day I want to build a gazebo in my yard hang string lights, put in a brick pizza oven, and hang my very own Taverna sign outside!
4. Your favorite Greek quote?
My favorite quote is when Yiayia used to say “θα φας και θα πεις ένα τραγούδι”. This translates to, “you will eat and you will sing a song!”... or in other words, “just eat your food and zip it!” My Yiayia would always yell this at my cousins and me at the table if we ever complained about any food she gave us. It makes me laugh just thinking about it, and sometimes my siblings and I say it to each other to mess around.
5. Can you share a favorite Greek recipe of yours?
I know… I know… this isn’t everyone’s favorite, but one of my top dips is Taramosalata (Fish Roe Dip). This is mine and my Yiayia Sofia’s favorite!
Taramosalata (Fish Roe Dip)
- 3.5 oz tarama (fish roe)
- 10 oz stale white bread, crustless
- 1 onion
- ¾ cup EVOO
- 2 lemons juice
- Soak the bread in water and then drain it
- Blend bread, add in onion and tarama. Blend.
- Add in olive oil one bit at a time whilst blending. Blend until creamy. Enjoy!
6. If you can go back to Greece now, where would you go? Would you prefer freddo or frappe on the beach?
I’m going straight to my island, Leros! First stop? The Zaharoplasteio. Second stop? The beach! I’m going to start off with a frappe and then I’ll finish off with a freddo because that is an impossible question and I want both!
7. What are your favorite Greek restaurants in California?
I usually rotate between El Greco and Souvlaki Greek Skewers. Love them both dearly!
8. Where do you see yourself in 5 years with your business?
I am a very go-with-the-flow person so this is such a hard question to answer. But I can tell you this… I have a giant bucket list with thousands of ideas and I plan on doing all of them! My goals are to always bring something surprising and exciting to the table and to bring joy to people every day.
9. How have your entrepreneurial motivations changed since you first started?
Sincerely, Sophoula started as me trying to keep my creative edge going and it came to be a business. I just did what I truly loved and everything fell into place. Of course, it took a lot of hard work and many mistakes, but eventually, things became second nature and I could focus on perfecting the business.
Now I’ve found a balance between creating something that fits the customer and their requests, but also giving a piece of me in everything I do.
10. What advice would you give to someone who wants to quit their 9-5 job and become an Entrepreneur?
Here are some things that I have learned with my business-
● Find your niche and make sure you are passionate about it.
● Don’t be afraid of change. Without change, you can’t evolve and that will only hold you back.
● Make sure you have a strong support system.
● Don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions and use your resources.
● If you don’t try, you will never know.
● You are going to make so many mistakes, to the point where you might question yourself. Don’t let that get to you, it’s a part of your process and you are going to look back and laugh at those moments!
● You’ve always got a friend in me, so please never hesitate to reach out for any advice!
Connect with Sincerely Sophoula On Social Media
Thank you so much Sophia for coming on the blog today! It has been fun, and I wish you the best of luck in your business endeavors. Keep rocking girl, and keep making those dreams happen!
Stay tuned in as we have a few things brewing up with Sophia!!
*Photo credit to Sincerely Sophoula 2021.