SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS ASHLEY WRAY OF MALA COLLECTIVE AND DAWN BISHOP FROM LADY FERN SET INTENTIONS FOR THE NEW YEAR
With every New Year, comes the opportunity to set new goals. Whether it’s a healthier diet, being active or creating a more balanced life – we could all use more of that good stuff. Reminding ourselves of those goals throughout the year isn’t an easy task, but Mala Collective is one local company helping people stay connected to their goals and inner voice. After spending over five years as a journalist in the Fraser Valley, Ashley Wray started the company with Matt Bateman out of a Chilliwack basement, which began with a collection of mala beads handcrafted in Bali, Indonesia. Mala beads have been used for hundreds of years in prayer and meditation. You may have seen these beautiful necklaces and bracelets made with rudraksha seeds and gemstones inside Highstreet’s Lady Fern.
“We believe you can use them in meditation or you can simply wear them as a reminder of an intention you are looking to set, or a feeling you are trying to cultivate,” Ashley tells us. “We simply want people to be inspired and to find something within themselves that they always possessed, but perhaps never tapped into. Whether that’s love, strength, or peace, and so on.”
As Mala Collective grows, Ashley is faced with constant challenges like most small business owners, which includes her own self-doubt. “Fear and self-doubt can make owning a business very lonely,” Ashley confides in us. To help herself out of those tough moments, Ashley surrounds herself with loving family and friends who she’s open and honest with and often turns to yoga, running or meditation.
Running a thriving small business and the challenges that come with it is something Dawn Bishop understands as well. A Fraser Valley native, Dawn opened Lady Fern at Highstreet over two years ago. “I spent 30 years in the ski and snowboard industry and noticed very few places for women to find athletic and lifestyle apparel,” Dawn shares with us. The store not only fills that need, but supports local brands like Mala Collective and other brands that produce sustainable textiles while giving back in some way. Inside Lady Fern, you’ll find S’well water bottles, which supports Unicef and Krochet Kids, a non-profit organization that empowers women through education and business mentorship. As for her goals this New Year, Dawn simply tells us, “I am constantly trying to be better and do better.”
Discover Mala Collective at Lady Fern. Lady Fern is located at Highstreet, across from Urban Behavior.
Photo Credit: Tanya Goehring, Post Photography
Model: Jy Stewart of Steve Nash Fitness World, located beside Old Navy
SHOP THE VIBE AT HIGHSTREET
Bath & Body Oil, $9.97, Walmart, Body Scrub & Cleanser, $7.97, Walmart, Krochet Kids Toque, $58, Lady Fern, Candle, $12.99, Marshalls
S'well Bottle, $40, Stability Block, $23.98, Sunglasses, $243, Sandals, $52
WheyEssential, $41.95 & VegEssentials, $59.95
Manitoba Mukluks, $120