We had the good fortune of connecting with Ida-Sofia Koivuniemi and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Ida-Sofia, can you share a quote or affirmation with us?
My favorite quote is, “There will never be another you.” I think this is so important in business (and life in general) because we can sometimes get so caught up in doing what other people are doing that we lose our sense of self. There is only one of you. No one can do things the way you can. You might as well use your creativity to its fullest and give the world everything you have to offer. It can be easy to get discouraged and feel like no idea you have is unique, but the thing is, the fact that you’re doing it your way is unique in itself. Believe in yourself and rejoice in your uniqueness. Your work is worthwhile and special!

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I started my candle company Evil Queen four years ago with one goal: make candles fun. When I started, there were no other companies that were doing “funny” candles, so I set off on the mission to make candles a perfect gift for any occasion. I’m extremely proud of where we’re at now. I started EQ in my apartment kitchen in Burbank, and now I have a staff of 10 and a warehouse where we make thousands of candles a month. Things were challenging in the beginning – getting the word out there with a pretty much non-existent marketing budget was difficult, but thanks to social media EQ was able to grow fairly quickly. I think determination and perseverance are everything when it comes to running a business. There have been so many days I have wanted to just give up, but I am so grateful I didn’t. Above all, when people think of EQ I hope they think of a fun, exciting brand with a business owner who cares about her customers. Then I’ll feel like i’ve really “made it” with my business.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I live in Venice, so I love the entire Venice area! I’d probably start off with a walk on the beach and then through Marina Del Rey – I love looking at the boats. We’d end up on Abbot Kinney for Brunch, probably hit up Butchers Daughter and then shop around a little bit. One of my other favorite restaurants on the west side is Samosa House. It’s vegan and vegetarian Indian food. SO delicious! I also like to skateboard, so I’d probably take someone to the Venice skate park to watch people skate. There are always some incredible skaters there! I’m not a huge hiker, but I do like going to Malibu and getting a view of the waves from the cliffs. I’d end an evening with dinner at Taverna Tony – another one of my favorite restaurants. As far as drinks go, I like the High Rooftop Lounge in Hotel Erwin in Venice, but I also love a dive bar like The Brig. I also like Brennan’s because I like being able to play games (like cornhole!) outside.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I’d love to give a huge shoutout to my best friend Shelli, owner of @stylesocietyboutique in Costa Mesa. She’s always there for me, supporting me and loving me through everything. The world needs more people like you!

Website: www.shopevilqueen.com
Instagram: @evilqueen and @ida__sofia
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/notsoevilqueens

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