By Rachel A. Hare
Sometimes we get caught in the trap of thinking that in order to have an effective ministry we need to be a great pastor or missionary. But Genevieve Fonseca is proof that God can use any talent and passion you have to reach people for Him!
Genevieve is the founder, owner and operator of Virgie’s Treasures-an Etsy store that specializes in customized and elaborate door decorations. She uses her business not only to sell handmade décor, but also to glorify God!
1) How did you begin your business?
My mom passed away due to cancer in January 2010, and four months later I had a dream about her. I wrote this on my Facebook that day because it was so real and I did not want to forget how beautiful it was.
“I had a dream last night that I saw my mom in my living room. I fainted! She snapped me out of it and said I have something for you. It was a big yellow construction paper card with her grandchildren on it and she bedazzled it with jewels and crowns. The crowns had rhinestones on the grandchildren’s heads. She even had jewels on their shoes! I asked my mom what she was doing in heaven and she said, “Arts and crafts!” What a dream, it made me happy today!”
From making hair bows and tutus for my girls, to making wreaths and other handmade gifts for the home, I realized just this past month that my dream meant something. I love crafts and love making beautiful things. This dream inspired me to put myself out there, do what I love, but most importantly, bless the people that I come into contact with.
I began my business in November 2013. It started with Pinterest. I was fascinated with home decor, Do It Yourself (DIY) and crafts. I spent hours scrolling through all kinds of DIY projects. I noticed I wanted a wreath but since I was a stay at home mom, the prices were too high for my budget. So I decided to try to make a burlap wreath. After YouTube videos and Googling with trial and error I finally got it. After my 4th burlap wreath I posted it on my Facebook page and family members wanted to buy some. So I made some for the family who bought them! I realized that I could make some extra cash by doing this and it would be great. So I prayed about it and asked God if I should do this. After a while of thinking about it I decided to put myself out there and start a business.
So then, I tried making deco mesh wreaths and got it down. I also started off making tutus, hair bows, ceramic tile coasters and other crafty items. But after the year I got busy with wreath making and now 90 percent of my shop is wreaths and garlands.
2) As you began, how did you see God at work?
Success. Success means for me, making my product and putting it out there and someone actually likes it, takes it home and it’s hanging on their door! That makes me happy. God opened the door to my creativity and taught me things I didn’t know I had!
3) How does your faith influence how you run your business?
I know that I could not have done this alone and only He could have done this for me. I knew it was the right move through Him. It is comforting to know that Jesus is real and my faith is stronger because of it.
I started crafting because it helped me during my grieving period. After I lost my mother I was heartbroken. Here I was almost 30 with two little ones and was hoping my mother could spend many years with my kids. She loved her grandchildren. My mother worked at a job she loved with a pretty tight paycheck but never wanted to move for more money because she loved where she was and loved the children.
In 2012, I lost my father. Both my parents passed away at the age of 54. With another child on the way (a baby boy) and my two girls they kept me busy. It could’ve been easy for me to fall into depression and bitterness during my time of mourning but, did not allow myself to fall into that pit. I needed to be strong for my family and keep moving.
I believe that God provided this crafting as an outlet to shed light into my heart and give me strength to move forward for me and my family. My faith has always been strong because of my husband, Ryan. He has been my rock, my supporter and leader.
When starting this business I knew I wanted to make affordable quality door decor and keep it budget friendly for anyone. I just love making wreaths and making my customers happy.
4) How are your God-given talents and gifts used in your business?
I use my creativity that God gives me and my hands to assemble something that will represent the love that He has for us. Each wreath is crafted with lots of patience, time and care. I want to make my customer feel loved and that they are special. A treasure from God.
5) How can the church better support your business?
I’ve done some craft shows where a percentage of my sales go towards something. For example: church missions and a no kill shelter. To help small businesses grow we can use our talents to take some of our proceeds to help our local church with foreign missions, local missions, food banks, helping families in need and more.
Since cancer hits home (for me), I know families going through tough times who could use help financially. I would love to start a “Crafting for Cancer” Event where I can put a craft show together and get local vendors to be a part of it and donate a percentage of their sales for families struggling with cancer.
6) How can we pray for you and your business?
Pray that God always comes first and for protection over my family. Pray that God continues to give me patience and desire to continue to create, to always keep creating as my passion, to always keep Jesus my passion, to shed light on people who need God’s love and those who don’t know Him will seek him through me. Pray that God continues to use me for His glory and not my own.
Find more information about Virgie’s Treasures
Follow on Instagram/virgiestreasures