This has always been one of my favorite passages because it personally rings loud and true for me. What started from pure hustle, grind, sweat and sometimes even tears has now become my passion and legacy, and has established a name in the Black Greek apparel world, known as Kendall’s Greek Apparel.
Years ago, after going through a rough divorce, I found myself struggling and trying to find a way to support my family on my own all while living check to check from my secretarial position at Michelin. Never imagining being in that situation, I tried to make ends meet while at the same time giving my children their hearts desires. Still, it just didn’t seem like it was enough. Life was taking its toll, I wasn’t truly happy, and kept telling God, there has to be more to life than just this.
Fully believing this in my heart, I came up with the idea of starting my own business. To be honest, I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to do, but knew I wanted it to be in the lines of apparel. So, I took that idea along with whatever little savings I had and invested it into selling children’s and family reunion shirts. This was my small beginning, but I gave it everything I had and more, and quickly became successful in it. Yet, still, I knew there had to be more, although I didn’t fully know what that more was. Then one day, simply while watching one of my favorite Black sitcoms, I noticed that they were all wearing Black College Apparel. That was my answer!
With hope and a prayer, I tracked down that vendor and tried getting them to wholesale their items to me, but because I did not have a brick-and-mortar location, they denied it. But I had come way too far to give up, and the idea itself kept tugging at me. So, I did the only thing that I knew to do. I held close to God, prayed without ceasing, became relentless in my faith and would not stop calling them until I recieved the response I was looking for. Needless to say, they finally gave me a contract and I ended up becoming the top seller out of all of his clients and was even featured in the local newspaper. From there I started selling Negro League items at pop up shops and pretty much any convention or conference that was focused on African American people.
Though I was selling out of product at these events however, the question was still being asked, “Do you have any Greek items or When are you going to sell your own Greekwear?” This took some thought and an overwhelming amount of faith because I had never been one to fail…until I was reminded of that same passage, “Do not despise these small beginnings, for the LORD rejoices to see the work begin…”
So, in 2005 I stepped out on my faith and made the transition into Greek Apparel by starting Kendall’s Greek, which has now become the top selling Greek Apparel company in South Carolina and is licensed across all the Divine 9.