Single mom opens 7 Clan Stand online

BY JAMI MURPHY
Former Reporter
12/28/2016 12:00 PM
Video with default Cherokee Phoenix Frame
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Cherokee Nation citizen Alyssa Henson stacks infinity scarves she’s made for upcoming orders customers have placed with her business 7 Clan Stand. JAMI MURPHY/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Cherokee Nation citizen Alyssa Henson went public with her business 7 Clan Stand on Dec. 10. It features handmade clothing with an Indigenous flair. JAMI MURPHY/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – Cherokee Nation citizen Alyssa Henson is a single mother who recently went “all in” for her business 7 Clan Stand, an online shop featuring casual wear clothing, regalia and gift items she considers to have Native American flair that many people look to buy.

Henson, a mother to her 2-year-old daughter Acy, said before going forward with her business she worked a full-time job, but during the past couple years she was always creating items on the side.

“I created my first product I think about almost two years ago. I created my first sweater. It was for me. It was just some stuff I had laying around and so I made it. I had people tell me ‘oh you should sell them. I want one,’” Henson said. “I was basically a walking advertisement before this even happened. It wasn’t until recently where I really – it had just been on my heart for a long time – I finally just jumped for it, and I just went for it and I got back a response that I didn’t even expect.”

She soon realized that the side projects could be a full-time job.

“I’d go to work and then come home and sew all night. Then I realized that this could be a full-time job. You know, creating and selling our products. I didn’t think it would be anything. It’s pretty cool,” she said. “I quit my job. I think it was the week of Thanksgiving. I just had so much faith in this. I don’t know where it came from. I just started making things and I posted them…I was busier than I’ve ever been in my life.”

Being a single mother, she said she has hopes of making the business profitable enough to sustain their home lives if not improve it.

“I have her all the time. My family helps me with her every once in a while. It’s just me and her in this house. I’m providing for her and doing everything that I can and every time if I get tired or something I’m just like ‘I’m doing this for my daughter.’ You know I’m completely doing this because she deserves a life, the best life that I can give her,” Henson said.

Some products she makes include house shoes, infinity scarves, jackets, stuffed animals, totes and cross-body purses and shirts. She also takes requests for products if it’s something she doesn’t already have.

Henson learned to hand sew from her grandmother and grew up making doll dresses. She said she didn’t learn to machine sew until after her daughter was born.

“I make her powwow regalia, and so I learned it with that and if you can make that you can pretty much make anything,” she said. “So it started then and I really experimented with what I could do and it just took off from there.”

Currently Henson only sells items she’s already made and posted on her 7 Clan Stand Facebook page. She said since posting publicly about her products people have been placing order after order and now she’s swamped with requests.

“All of the sudden I got a bunch of orders, you know, for different sizes. I thought I was just going to sell the ones I have online,” Henson said. “So that’s when it really blew up…we got almost 300 likes overnight.”

Henson said she was working to complete nearly 50 orders for customers for the holiday season and that she has long-term goals to include a spring and summer clothing line as well as back-to-school items. She said she’s also trying to get a storefront to showcase her products.

For more information, call 918-708-5567 or visit the 7 Clan Stand Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/7clanstand/.

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