We had the good fortune of connecting with Suni Gargaro and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Suni, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I originally gave up my stable, corporate career to launch my own business because my ultimate goal was freedom. That included time freedom in the sense of doing something I loved and doing it on my own terms, along with financial freedom, With Sunia Yoga, the concept developed out of an intersection of my passions in life. Those passions are yoga, fashion, and helping others (especially Moms and Kids, which led to the Mommy and Me Yoga concept that is central to my brand.) I have been practicing yoga for over 18 years now. I started out with a line of Yoga wear, given that the market and demand were and are very strong, and I found that with a little creativity, this aspect of the business was going to be the quickest and lowest “barrier to entry” in terms of getting my brand’s concept off the ground. Long term however, it has always been part of the plan to complete my yoga certifications, and eventually launch a physical yoga studio that incorporated a retail component to include my active-wear and accessories. The two sides of the business are naturally very complimentary, and each theoretically feeds into the potential growth of the other. And again, it gives me a unified, central concept that encapsulates all of those passions under one “brand roof”. Aspects of this are still in progress, but once all of my efforts come to full fruition, the end result will be what I consider a true dream business that serves all of those goals and passions of mine that I mentioned before. I get to do what I love, while wearing what I love 😉 and help others learn to do the same, while earning a respectable living doing all of the above. That to me is a dream come true.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Nothing about founding my own yoga apparel line has been easy as is probably the case for most business owners when they first start out.
Our mission is to brighten your yoga practice, fueled by my own personal passion for yoga, and my deeply held conviction in the limitless power of yoga to change bodies, minds, and lives. Our core mission is to empower women, men and especially kids to get on the yoga mat together. We designed our “Mommy and Me” matching leggings to promote healthy bonding and the plain fun that goes along with it! Our leggings are bold and beautiful because we believe in living a colorful life. I try to bring inspiration to every pattern and design. We take pride in having vibrant colors with exceptional durability that endure wash after wash. We use the highest quality sublimation printing process with eco friendly water-based ink with no unnecessary chemicals. We only use premium quality fabric that is soft as butter on your skin, yet durable and long-lasting. We are proud of our recently launched Eco Friendly (recycled fabric) leggings. We practice sustainability wherever we can.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Working from South to North:
1. Seaport Village (including a ferry ride to Coronado for drinks and dinner!)
2. Top of the Hyatt: Rooftop bar at the Hyatt Downtown San Diego
3. La Jolla Cove
4. The Herringbone La Jolla: Great restaurant with beautiful ambiance.
5. Torrey Pines State Beach 6. Del Mar State Beach
7. Arterra Del Mar
8. Pacifica Del Mar
9. Cedros Design District: A quaint corner of Solana Beach with an eclectic but beautiful mix of independent retailers
10. Self Realization Temple in Encinitas
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
There are three special people that have helped to propel me forward on my entrepreneurial and life journey. The first is my husband Doug, who ever since I met him, has encouraged and shared my dream of being an independent business owner. He has teamed with me through every step of the way, jumping in to contribute business and marketing strategy, helping me build and design products and websites, and being my number one cheerleader to keep me going, forever there whispering in my ear (or sometimes shouting) “never give up!” 🙂 Another is my lifelong Yoga Teacher, Shashi Pottathil. This man is an incredible inspiration to so many people through his teachings of yoga, meditation, and philosophy, and through his living example. 20+ years ago Shashi quit a very comfortable full time career in corporate business to pursue his passion for teaching yoga, and quickly built it into the thriving studio that it is today i.e. Yoga and Meditation Center (http://www.yogaandmeditationcenter.com/) And finally, my beloved nine year old son, Mason. He is my light and my inspiration for everything that I do. Part of my mission as a parent is to lead by example and help him find his own path to independence in business and in life. If I can do that, I have done my job.
Heather Lake (Fox 5) Debbie Vanbeck (Elementary School Teacher)