Spotlight: How the Founders of Mara’J Boutique Turned Grief into a Business That Helps Others


Mara J Boutique

Losing a loved one is always difficult. However, recognizing the importance of that person and keeping their memory alive can sometimes help others with feelings of grief.

Spotlight: Mara’J Boutique

That’s the idea behind Mara’J Boutique. The couple who founded this jewelry company experienced their own loss and decided to turn their loss into a way to help others. Read about their story below in this week’s Small Business Spotlight.

What the Business Does

Provides products for families dealing with grief.

Co-founder Renard Roan told Small Business Trends, “We sell a variety of memorial bracelets and bangles for those who have lost a loved one.”

Business Niche

Their top-selling angel bracelets.

Roan says, “During a loss we want our customers to know that their angel(s) are forever looking over them and they are with them. We have angel pieces on majority of our bracelets and they come in various colors.”

How the Business Got Started

After a difficult loss.

Owners Renard and Renita Roan founded Mara’J shortly after losing their daughter, Kali Roan, in July 2019.

Roan says, “Feeling alone, Renita wanted to find a way to reach out to others in order to say, “You are not in this by yourself!”. The only problem was that she didn’t know how. One day Renita received a visit from her mother and sister. They entered the room in silence with a small plant and seconds later they stated, “It’s not much, but we didn’t know what to get you.”. It was at that moment that Renita questioned, what do you give someone that is grieving? That is when the simple thought of a memorial bracelet came to mind. Now our bracelets can be for anyone who has experienced a loss whether it be the loss of a parent, grandparent, a child, or even a close friend.”

Biggest Win

Recognition from others.

Roan explains, “We were featured in a local online magazine called VoyageMia which is based in South Florida. This was a major win for us because it made us realize that what our company has done to bring comfort to hundreds of people during a loss has been noticed. Apparently someone reached out to the magazine and told them about our goals and missions. What this means to our business is that what we are trying to do to help those who are grieving is apparently working. It brings us the uttermost joy.”

Biggest Risk

Starting the business.

Roan adds, “We weren’t sure if our brand was something that would sell because we didn’t know if our product was actually something that our consumers “needed”. Luckily it worked in our favor. We wanted our customers to know it was more than just buying a bracelet. This bracelet was a tool that could be used to provide comfort during this time of grief and heartache.”

Lesson Learned

Focus on social media from the start.

Roan says, “In today’s world social media and online shopping has dominated the competition. We do have social media accounts and our online shop allows our customers to purchase online, but we are having an issue getting our brand out there to make more consumers aware of who we are and what our company has to offer.”

How They’d Spend an Extra $100,000

Improving the product.

Roan adds, “At the moment our jewelry is considered costume jewelry. With this ample amount of money we would purchase gold and sterling silver to provide our customers with an everlasting memorial bracelet. A bracelet that they can wear at all times and for every occasion.”

Favorite Quote

“The best way to overcome a loss is by keeping the memory of your loved ones alive” – Renita, Mara’J Owner

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Image: Mara’J

This article, “Spotlight: How the Founders of Mara’J Boutique Turned Grief into a Business That Helps Others” was first published on Small Business Trends