From 5 years of being a kindergarten-activity teacher to creating baby clothes, Maya never stopped loving everything related to kids. She believes that a person can make a difference from the simplest things one can find in her/his everyday life.
After she moved to Ireland, the inflation in Lebanon started and then the pandemic crisis came along. That was the main trigger that pushed Maya to open an online store and find a way to help in the Lebanese market. Below are questions that were asked from our customers who wanted to know more about Maya and Sensei.
Who is Sensei?
Sensei is a character I created that was inspired by Baymax from the Disney movie of Big Hero 6. During my time in Lebanon, I had a friend who was like a guardian for me and who inspired me all the way. She stood by me every step of the way and showed me how failure is not an option for us and that success and happiness should be our everyday moments. So I drew Sensei and tried to mix the character of my friend and Baymax together. And this how Sensei became as you now see on our social media platform.
Why changed from adults to baby clothes?
I’m new in this business, and I believe that one should try and fail then try again until the goal has been reached. At the time I opened the store for adult clothes, all of my friends who are married were struggling to find the good quality that their children needed. So I did qualitative research with the Lebanese parents and I saw that there is a huge hole in the baby products market especially in the quality that is being provided to the little ones. With the help of my family and friends, I was able to switch my brand clothing line from adults to baby essential products. I know it’s gonna take time to provide this quality that I’m working on, but I cant wait to make every baby shine as he/she deserves.
How were you able to start Shine with Sensei in the middle of a pandemic and Lebanese inflation?
I heard a friend of mine opened an e-commerce platform in Lebanon in 2020 and I saw that this is my first step to make a difference while I’m away from home. The platform was so easy, it really helped me start in a smooth way and with the help of my sisters and friends, Shine with Sensei came to life.
What makes Sensei a sustainable brand?
Sustainability matters. Being 100% cotton, no chemicals added and it is ethically made baby clothing and accessories. All of these are being monitored and focused on every product we create. We are based in Lebanon which gave us the opportunity to manage the entire production such as supervising the team & the tailor, maintaining their good health and comfort and looking at the product materials that are being used.
Well, our aim is to open an opportunity in Lebanon for the little ones to enjoy every moment with their family. There is a lot of plan and ideas that I would love to start implementing, but as Maya Angelo once said: All great achievements requires time. So let’s see how it goes! 😁🙌