Turning A Hobby Into A Career

  • Published on:
    August 19, 2019
  • Reading time by:
    8 minutes
Before Hostess Helper NYC, Ariel worked in New York City as a counselor. She loved her my job of supporting and guiding others to reach their potential. She would often use her therapeutic background at work and save her creative side for when she was hosting at home. It had always been a hobby and something Ariel enjoyed doing.

Most people want to keep their hobbies pure. They feel that monetizing them will make them impure. Others feel like their hobbies just aren’t monetizable, but where there’s a will there’s a way. People need to stop living for the weekend, dreading going to work in the morning, and constantly watching the clock for the second it becomes time to clock out for the day.

It’s possible to make just about any hobby profitable. For example before Hostess Helper NYC, Ariel worked in New York City as a counselor.  She loved her job of supporting and guiding others to reach their potential. She would often use her therapeutic background at work and save her creative side for when she was hosting at home. It had always been a hobby and something Ariel enjoyed doing. When Ariel’s daughter was born, she came to realize how difficult it was to host her friends and family who wanted to come and meet the new baby. It put into perspective the challenges that others face when wanting to have an Instagram-worthy event but feel they are unable to do so. Ariel founded Hostess Helper NYC to support her clients through the process of planning and styling their events.

Ariel Sagat loves being able to combine her therapeutic background with her passion for entertaining. She currently lives in New York City with her husband and daughter. She loves to entertain for her family and friends and to see her clients proud of the events she helps them to host.

In your own words, what do you do?

I am the female founder of Hostesses Helper NYC, an event planning and styling company. While our primary focus is helping our local clients to organize, style, plan, and host their events, we really love to use social media to inspire and encourage our followers to bring out their inner hostesses. Our instagram posts often offer tips and advice for at home hosting. 

What inspired you to start Hostesses Helper NYC?

I personally have always loved entertaining guests, but understood that for many it can be a daunting and overwhelming task to host. When my daughter was born, I learned the difficulties of hosting family and friends who wanted to meet the baby. It felt as though I only had time to care for my newborn, let alone take a shower, clean my house, and set up for my guests. It was that moment that I realized I wanted to help others who felt the way I was feeling. Whether it is because they don’t have the time or feel as though they don’t have the vision for styling a party, my goal for my company is to empower others to be proud of their events.

Where do you get your creative inspiration for your events? 

I am inspired by literally everyone everywhere! I really love following instagram accounts of bakers, bloggers, party boutiques, and other event stylists in the industry. I also often search for ideas or inspiration on Pinterest, and by browsing in stores. Sometimes I even find myself looking through party supplies from previous events and finding new ways to recycle them for different events.  

What have you learned most from entrepreneurship?

To me, being an entrepreneur evokes similar feelings to being a mom, just as I feel as though I have a handle on what I am doing something new comes up and changes everything! It’s overwhelmingly exciting and scary at times and everyday feels like a rollercoaster ride of emotions. It is not for everyone, but I know that it is for me. I am proud of what my company is becoming and so optimistic of what it can become in the future. I truly feel so lucky and am so grateful to those around me for their unconditional love, support, and encouragement because being a boss lady can be really hard. I have learned, even when it is incredibly difficult, you have to always believe in yourself.

What is your background, and how did you decide to get into this business?

I originally worked in NYC as a counselor with my Master’s Degree in therapy. I really loved my job of supporting and guiding others to reach their potential. I would often use my therapeutic background at work and save my creative side for when I was hosting at home. It had always been a hobby and something I enjoyed doing. I was often told that I had a knack or an eye for styling parties. When my daughter was born, I realized how difficult it was for me to host friends and family who wanted to come and meet my new baby. It put into perspective the challenges that others face when wanting to have an instagram-worthy event but feel they are unable to do so. I founded Hostess Helper NYC to support my clients with the process of planning and styling their events. I love being able to combine my therapeutic background with my passion for entertaining. The best part for me is seeing our clients proud of the events they have hosted.

Are there any new trends or ideas in the event planning industry you are loving right now?

There are so many summer party trends I love working on right now- everything from mermaid, to tropical, to just summer vibes. What I really love most is that this summer theme can be tailored to fit any event and can be made kid friendly or for adults only. To make adult only parties extra fun we’ve been doing a lot of alcoholic sorbets, popsicles, and frosé pouches.

Somewhere down the road, you knew you had the potential to start Hostesses Helper NYC. How can women like yourself become more sooner aware of their potential? 

A year or two before I had started Hostess Helper NYC I thought I was really happy with where I was in my career. It isn’t until now that I look back and reflect on how I wasn’t following my ambitions and pushing myself to reach a higher potential. For me it took having my daughter to bring me to a crossroad, where I was forced to decide whether or not to return to work or start something new. I believe that if you feel like going to work is a chore, then maybe ask yourself if it is the right work for you. Everyday of being an entrepreneur takes a lot of time and energy; it can be very stressful and you never have a day off. You feel responsible for everything, but it never feels like it is work because I love every second of it. 

What is a skill you think all women should learn and why?  

I think as women we are too hard on ourselves and often lack the self confidence we deserve. We unfairly compare ourselves to others and as a result feel we aren’t measuring up. I certainly have moments of getting down on myself when I feel I am not doing as well as others in the industry. A skill I’d like to teach my daughter and I wish I had learned earlier in life is self care and confidence in my own abilities. Instead of comparing ourselves to others we should be comparing ourselves to who we were a year or two ago. I am proud of my growth, and sometimes I need to work to remind myself how far I have come. If we believe in ourselves, we won’t let anything or anyone stop us. 

Describe Hostesses Helper NYC

Hostess Helper NYC is so much more than just an event planning and styling company in the NYC area. What makes us different is that with each event we work to customize and tailor our services to meet our client’s individual needs. Some clients may request more support with the event planning logistics, while others prefer more assistance with the styling details that bring a theme to life. No matter how large or small the event is, our clients have one-on-on support of a stylist, whose main focus is to guide them through the process.  My goal for Hostess Helper NYC has always been to empower our clients to host the events of their dreams. In the future I’d love to expand and have Hostess Helper NYC reach clients nation-wide. 

What have been some of your failures, and what have you learned from them?

Every time I have had success, there have been multiple trials of failures behind it. There is no manual for becoming an entrepreneur and so I have made many mistakes along the way and expect that I will continue to make many more mistakes. I try not to view them as failures but rather just learning. One challenge I faced in the beginning of starting my company was not knowing my worth and the worth of our services. By that I mean I struggled with knowing how much of myself to give to my clients because I really wanted to help them.

As a result, I had a difficult time setting boundaries and saying no. I would respond to emails, phone calls, or messages at all hours of the day. Because I felt uncomfortable saying, “we don’t offer those services” I would instead take on additional responsibilities that I didn’t want to take on or without compensation. I learned that the more I struggled with this, the more I felt as though I was being taken advantage of. Now I realize I didn’t set boundaries. I have learned that though I am helping my clients, I still owe it to my company to maintain professionalism. I tailored our contracts to specify our services and pricing upfront. With my new confidence, both parties know exactly what to expect from our working relationship at the beginning. 

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