It’s a beautiful bright morning in Harare; a light warm breeze softly brushes my face as I rush to the office for my 8:30 interview. It’s a day like no other; I’m excited to log on to my social media account to chat with the forever amazing Miss Summer Rose, a woman of passion – a woman of strength – a dreamer – an inspiration, in brief, “a phenomenal woman.”
Summer Rose is a successful business woman who has bravely + gracefully ventured in the Billion Dollar Beauty Industry in the United Kingdom. She currently has two fragrances, Belle for women and Androgyny for both sexes. Rose is not only popular for her business endeavors; she runs a lifestyle blog titled ‘Summer Rose’ and has earned the title ‘fashion icon’ for her bold, daring and gorgeous fashion pieces. She continues to defy the odds and growing her empire, proving that women can do it all.
Today, she shares her life, her passion, her legacy. Summer Rose, In Her Own Words….
Please tell us a bit about yourself and how you got started on the lifestyle blog Summer Rose?
My name is Rose, although most people on social media know me as Summer Rose which is my brand name. I was born and raised in Zimbabwe then moved to the UK in my early 20’s. My Summer Rose journey started off on a Facebook page called ‘zviri kufaya na Kheda’ where we used to post funny videos just joking and messing around. From there, people got to know about me and I gained quite a significant following. I then decided to put my new found popularity to good use and started a business. That’s how the perfume brand came about.
What inspired you to create the two fragrances Belle and Androgyny?
I have always had a love for fragrances so when it came to deciding what business I was going to venture into, Fragrance was the first thought that came to mind. Having spent so much money on high end fragrances over the years, I wanted to create fragrances that are as good in quality as the high end brands without the hefty price tag. I wanted to create a brand that is affordable to all and I’m glad I have achieved that. When I created Belle, I was solely focused on women. Men complained that I was discriminating so I decided why not create a unisex scent for both sexes and that’s how androgyny came about. It has been received so well, I’m so happy!
As an Entrepreneur what has been your key/keys to success?
Praying! Putting in the work…Dedication…Perseverance… Believing in myself… Focus! When you are running your own business you must be prepared to work around the clock especially when you are starting out, there’s just no time to slack. You will encounter endless challenge, that’s just the process. A lot of people will discourage you and will have you second guessing yourself but pay them no mind. Stays focused and keep your eyes on the prize.
What advice would you give to the young dreamers who aspire to grow their own businesses in the future?
Start where you are. Start small if you don’t have enough money, the business will grow itself. Believe in yourself, set yourself some goals and put in the work. Surround yourself with people that motivate you not those that discourage you and make you feel like you are not capable when you know you are. Put God first he already knows your every need.
What challenges have you faced that other business owners can learn from?
Being in the perfume business, my biggest challenge has been the perfume shipping regulations which prohibits posting of perfume abroad as it is considered a flammable liquid. That has meant losing a lot of potential customers outside of the UK. I’m still working on finding ways around that but that is currently my biggest challenge.
How do you balance traveling and business?
Travelling has been one of my biggest passions for as long as I can remember so I just have to make the time. I’m actually a psychiatric nurse by profession too and I work full time so juggling everything can be challenging. I have had to become really good at planning and managing my time. Where there’s a will there’s a way they say.
Out of all the countries you have traveled to, which one has inspired your fashion sense and how?
It has to be New York City! What a vibrant colorful city full of unimaginable fashions! New Yorkers are without a doubt the biggest trend setters. They don’t shy away from experimenting with clothes and styles and I have certainly stolen a bit of that from them. I experiment with clothes a lot. Sometimes I don’t quite get it right but most of the time it just works.
As a globe-trotter what is your dream destination and why?
Dream destination has got to be Bora Bora; I mean have you seen it! It looks just like a dream doesn’t it? I’m hoping to make it there sometime soon. I would also love to visit the Serengeti just for the safari. I love animals and that would be no doubt a dream holiday for me.