Bretta Farina launched her custom dog collar business to make a living and provide flexible job opportunities for women.
Farina – owner and founder of Puddle Jumper Pups, started her online business nine years ago and estimates she’s sold about 1 million collars so far. “When my husband joined the military, I needed a job, too,” says the Tennessee native and mother of two. “I needed an income, and it needed to be flexible.” Next spring, she will open her first storefront, located at 261 Meridian Drive near Aldi and behind Your Pie, in Grovetown. “We probably won’t get possession of the building until December,” Farina states. The store will make collars and sell them (see artist’s rendering above) in a combination production and retail studio. She employs seamstresses in various cities throughout the U.S. Her two local seamstresses and two other employees she plans to hire will work in the store. Farina’s seamstresses receive all the equipment and supplies they need to sew collars and ship them to customers.
She was inspired to start Puddle Jumper when she began sewing collars for her dogs, and people wanted to buy them. Her business also sells leashes, harnesses, and accessories. “You can get any old collar at Walmart or a pet store,” explains Farina. “We can mix and match accessories or keep it really simple.” Her collars typically sell for $23.50. She advises women wanting to start their own businesses to work hard and understand success takes time. “Show up before everybody else when there’s nobody else,” Farina adds. “Don’t quit just because it’s not working.” She says it’s also important to surround yourself with people who can help your business succeed and grow by complementing your strengths. Farina used to sew collars for her customers, but now her seamstresses handle all the production work, while she runs the company. “I know business, they know construction,” she states.
While Farina has enjoyed running her online business, she looks forward to meeting customers in person at the store and getting feedback on her products. “We don’t always get feedback,” she explains. “It helps us do our job better.”
For more information or to view the company’s full line of products, visit puddlejumperpups.com.