UPDATE: The winner of the Fleur-de-lis wall decor is Peggy! Congrats! Sarah will be contacting you.
God has blessed me with wonderful friends to inspire me along the journey of life. Today I’m featuring a gal I’ve known since she was 19, my sweet friend Sarah Trop. Sarah knows no strangers—she’s one of those folks who brings joy and laughter when she enters the room and makes everyone around her feel special. She loves God, her family, her friends, her church—and interior design. I’ve watched Sarah become a bride, a mother, and now an entrepreneur. I’m excited to share her story & a giveaway today!
John & Sarah and the kiddos
How did you get started as a small business owner?
We started our furniture design business, FunCycled, about a year and a half ago because I wanted to be home with my kids—they’re growing up too fast! First, I thought about making jewelry and crafts. Then it came to me: my husband John enjoys building furniture, and I melt over interior design.
Plus, I’ve been painting since I was twelve. Mom and dad paid for us to have art classes. Since we were homeschooled, they figured this would give us more “culture.” (lol.) FunCycled actually started as a blog to show people how we redid furniture pieces in need of new life.
After I ran out ofroom in my house, we began selling what we made. Then people started calling to ask if I could find furniture to custom paint for them or paint furniture they already owned. We’re all about adding the fun in upcycling!
How do you accomplish what you need to while raising the kiddos?
Now THAT’s a good question. More days than not, I start out overwhelmed. Then I ask God for help. He shows me what He has planned for my day and enables me to accomplish all that I have planned.
I always remember that I started all this to spend time with my little ones. So most days I work while they nap. (And, yes, I have 3 and 5 year-olds that still nap!) My hubby is not a night owl so he’s in bed by 8pm, as well as the kids. That leaves me from 8pm to 12am to create. This schedule generally works. But I must admit, my kids know more about paint colors, fabric designs, and the best places to find furniture than most. They’ve even been known to help their Mommy with a paint brush!
What are some benefits you love most about the work?
My favorite thing about what I do is being able to meet new people and create something that brings joy to their home. There’s something special about helping a customer re-imagine a piece of furniture. It’s amazing how a new design, color, or knob can bring a piece to life. Creating a pretty piece of furniture just makes me happy!
How do you decide on projects and where do you sell your pieces?
I really just go with my gut. If I see something that I can picture redone in a certain way, I buy it. If it’s free, I take it and hope the idea comes to me in time.
I sell my pieces on our website primarily but am hoping to have more time to dive into other areas once the kiddos are in school in September.
The most popular question I get asked is, where do you get all of your pieces? People don’t usually like my reply because it’s not a quick, easy way for them to go get the same thing. I’m always on the lookout for furniture with potential anywhere I go—yard sales, Craigslist, even garbage day. (Yes, I’ve been known to dumpster dive !)
Secondly, people ask me if I can paint furniture they already own or help them find a piece that would work for their home. The answer is YES! We can paint what you have or find what you’re looking for. I have much more access to finding pieces than most people do.
Where are we located?
We are based out of Troy, NY. We don’t have a retail shop—yet. Right now, we do everything in our home and either deliver or hold the piece for pick-up. We have shipped our furniture throughout the country—to North Carolina, Wisconsin, Indiana, and Massachusetts—and we’ll ship to you!
What’s next for you?
FunCycled has grown so much that it’s more than one person can handle. We’ve been praying about my husband quitting his job and joining me in the business. And we finally have complete peace about this next step. So our exciting news is that my husband will be joining FunCycled full-time! We’ll now have time to custom build furniture and expand into interior painting and color consults.
GIVEAWAY: To celebrate this new phase of FunCycled, Sarah’s giving away this beautiful wall piece: Fleur-de-lis Cast Iron Hangers with Burlap on Reclaimed Wood. It’s a $25 item that she’ll send to you for FREE! (Also, free S&H, US only.) The giveaway will run until Friday, June 28th.
All you have to do is leave a comment on this post. In that one comment, you can list any bonus entries you’ve completed. You don’t need to leave separate comments. (Since I do have to moderate some comments—especially if you’re new to the blog—don’t worry if your comment doesn’t show up right away.)
**Also, I believe you have to enter your email address in order to comment. Though you can’t see your email address here, I can view it from my blog dashboard. So don’t feel you need to write your email address again in your comment
Thanks for reading Sarah’s story. Have a great day, friends! Continue Reading…