Small business Saturday has extra special meaning for me.
Not only do I have my own small online business, justjillshop.com, but one of the driving forces behind what I love about my small business is the ability to feature other small businesses from around the country.
I’ve always loved finding products by entrepreneurs, inventors, creators, and families.
There’s a story behind every product, and one of the missions at Just Jill is to uncover those stories and bring them to all of you.
So, in honor of Small Business Saturday, I thought it would be fun to share a little “behind the scenes” with the people and brands behind some of the products you’ll find at justjillshop.com.
I met Gabrielle Melchionda in 1997 when she was in the early years of making her beeswax lip balms.
I instantly liked her and quickly grew to admire her drive and passion.
Fast forward nearly 25 years, and Gab still embodies the same passion for making quality beauty items with the cleanest ingredients possible.
Based in Maine, the Mad Gabs assortment now includes a variety of products, from balms for lips, body and hands, to sunscreens and DIY lip balm kits for kids of all ages.
Mad Gabs was one of the first small business brands I reached out to when I started thinking about an online shop.
I love the products, what they stand for, how they’re made, and of course, I adore Gab. She has been a supporter of Just Jill since our very first conversation!
I’m proud to share the story of Mad Gabs with all of you (and of course, the great products too!) To see the entire Mad Gabs collection, CLICK HERE.
Be sure to check out some of our other small beauty brands as well.
What happens when a small food vendor travels from Oklahoma to Philadelphia for a trade show and forgets the signage for her booth?
Jill Bauer walks by and says “that’s the kind of company that needs someone to find them.” And so I did!
From the first moment I met founder, Rachel Scott, I just had a feeling that her product was a hidden treasure.
And one spoonful of her family’s pepper jams and fruit butter proved that to be true!
In addition to her delicious jams, Rachel has also created some of the best cookie mixes I’ve ever tried.
I love that these recipes all come from Rachel’s Mom and Grandmothers. You can’t beat good family recipes!
Rachel has sold out multiple times already since she debuted at Just Jill in November.
If you’re looking for a unique gift or want to treat yourself to some delicious, high-quality jams, be sure to get yours before we run out for the season! Check out more of Rachel’s story HERE.
You should also check out some of the other small FOOD brands we carry!
A chance meeting at the baseball field is what started my journey with Jen Tuerff. Jen and I live in the same area and our kids have played sports together here or there over the years.
You can learn more about her story HERE.
And of course, her colorful bracelets are stocked in all of the cute shops and boutiques around our area.
With such popularity, I wasn’t sure if Jen would find value in my little shop. But she is one of the sweetest, most supportive gals I know and was willing to not only take a chance on the shop, but also work with me to create a unique assortment of products.
This sodalite bracelet, like all PowerBeads by jen bracelets, is hand-strung in Jen’s studio in Pennsylvania. I love the hues of blue in sodalite… it reminds me of all of the shades of denim. And the hammered heart represents the heart in the Just Jill logo.
This bracelet was one of our first jewelry items at Just Jill and has been a best seller. I look at it as the perfect example of one small business supporting another!
Our PowerBeads by jen collection has grown to 15 colorful bracelets, in various sizes, stones and meanings.
Jen has created a beautiful collection of meaningful jewelry for her followers, which now includes so many of you in the Just Jill community!
Musee makes handcrafted, natural bath products in Madison County, Mississippi with the mission of restoring lives by providing dignified work for vulnerable people in their community.
They primarily hire women in recovery, people with disabilities, and people who have lived in chronic poverty. Their products are handmade in the USA with ethically sourced, natural ingredients.
I love to support products that I know are helping people and giving them purpose. It’s important and an easy way to give back.
To love thy neighbor, if you will. I hope that makes the Musee collection even more special to you as you consider making a purchase from their assortment.
Other Small Businesses
It’s hard to cover ALL of the amazing small businesses in the Just Jill Shop, but here are a few I’d like to highlight!
Girl Crush Co. is run by a wonderful woman named Candace Abel. She started making her own soaps while on a mission to find healthier products for her youngest son who had a critical blood disorder.
That’s why all of her products are made with organic, responsibly-sourced oils and other ingredients from local suppliers.
Girl Crush also uses it’s profits to mentor, educate and employ at-risk young mothers in a program called Second Grace. This unique 2-year program provides resources and support for single mothers.
Then there’s kc Essentials. Home-grown in our backyard of Chester County, PA, the founder Katie Centrella created this brand in an effort to help her infant son.
At the time, he suffered from severe eczema and experienced an anaphylactic reaction. After a lot of testing, Katie learned her son had multiple food allergies—meaning they had to carefully consider what they put in and on his little body. And yes, topically as well!
That’s when Katie decided to create her own personal care products made from natural, non-harmful ingredients. After sharing her quest and learning that many other women faced the same issues, she began really pursuing her brand.
Now, she creates a whole family of products (many of which you can find in the Just Jill Shop) and continues to bring affordable, clean personal care products to those who need it most.
You love our candles and I’m so happy to see you continue buying them. But they’re more than just a regular old candle you can find at the store.
They’re hand-poured by my good friend Ed who puts an incredible amount of hard work into making them the best candles out there.
They’re fresh, made with 100% soy wax, and they don’t sit on the shelves for weeks like some other candles do.
Those of you who’ve tried them have such amazing things to say. And it truly means so much. These scents are hand-picked by me and Ed is a mastermind at bringing everything together.
Supporting Small Businesses
I’m always on the lookout for new products from small vendors for the Just Jill shop. I’ve come to find that you all love the stories and people behind the products the same way that I do.
And of course, I can’t thank you enough for your support of my little shop.
Every purchase supports my small woman-owned business and gives me the confidence to keep on going and find new things for you.
Thanks for remembering justjillshop.com the next time you need a special something! As you’re finishing up your holiday shopping, be sure to check out our special Black Friday Weekend offers HERE.
From my shop to your home,