Thirteen years ago, Victoria Sims’ husband gave her an affectionate nickname: Boss Lady.
Today, that nickname has transformed into a full-fledged business called With Love, Boss Lady, which sells personalized gifts, as well as home and wedding decor all handcrafted by Sims.
“(My husband) thought it would be perfect for me to use ‘With Love, Boss Lady,’ since everything is handcrafted by me with love, of course,” Sims said.
Her inventory includes wine glasses, vases, candleholders, dishtowels, bridal robes, totes, hats, throw pillows and signs.
Products from With Love, Boss Lady can be bought through the company’s website (WithLoveBossLady.com) or in person at the Napa Farmers Market and Vista Collina Resort’s Artisan Market, which takes place every third Sunday of the month.
Sims also sells her creations at various events throughout the Napa Valley, including downtown Napa’s Blues, Brews and BBQ.
Sims creates many of her products using a die cutting machine and sanding table.
Her most popular items among customers are her “no soliciting” signs, which cost about $18, wine glasses ($10-$15) and sun hats ($50).
“My goal is to provide the best handmade quality and stylish designs for any budget,” Sims said.
“I strive to have the best customer service and a fast turnaround on orders for all occasions.”
Before starting her own business, Sims worked in the hospitality industry for 10 years, as well as in sales in the Napa Valley.
She was introduced to the Napa area by her aunt, who worked in Napa law enforcement.
“I was visiting here for the summer to work and ended up meeting my husband and making Napa Valley my home,” for many years, Sims said.
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Sims discovered her love of arts and crafts during a difficult time in her life.
She and her husband, who have been married for 12 years, wanted to start a family but struggled with infertility.
They then suffered a loss after attempting in vitro fertilization.
“We were devastated,” Sims said.
“All our hopes and dreams were gone.”
Two months later, Sims’ best friend treated her to a paint night for her birthday.
“I painted with acrylics for the first time and enjoyed it so much that I went out and purchased acrylic paints and canvases,” Sims said. “Every time I felt like I was going to fall apart I threw myself into painting. This was my new hobby and my outlet.”
As Christmas approached that year, Sims decided to make her own holiday ornaments.
“My first ornament I made was a clear glass ball that I placed Swarovski crystals on with my mother’s name and faux snow inside,” she said.
Christmas is one of Sims’ favorite holidays, and she will be one of the vendors at the Christmas fair later this year at the Napa Valley Expo.
What she enjoys most about arts and crafts — and running her own business — is showing her creativity and having the ability to do what she loves.
“(I have) the freedom to create something that I’m passionate about,” Sims said.