Mother, daughter credit small business for helping them through the lasting effects of COVID-19

Chesterfield County

NORTH CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WRIC) — One North Chesterfield woman and her daughter say the small business they started in their home has helped them bounce back after COVID-19 hit them hard.

Kelli Mitchell and her daughter Amandela Mitchell said building and selling home décor started out as a side hustle. However, that changed when Kelli contracted COVID-19 at the start of the pandemic in 2020.

“When a physician tells you, well, ‘you’re going to have to find another line of business,’ I was more concerned about the fact that I wouldn’t be able to work then you know, like the diagnosis,” Mitchell said.

She became a COVID-19 long hauler, feeling the effects months later in September of that year, spending a week in the hospital.

“On my way to work one day, I lost feeling in my right side,” she said. “I assumed I was having a stroke.”

Kelli left three decades of nursing behind and Amandela left a teaching position at The Goddard School in Chesterfield to support her mom.

That’s when Kay Jhanee Décor, LLC got its start. They began with small orders to family and friends and eventually began selling orders online.

Amandela Mitchell creates a welcome sticker for a home décor sign she is working on to sell to a customer. (Photo: 8News Reporter Sabrina Shutters)

The mother and daughter duo now sell 30 products a week between their handmade home decorations with Kay Jhanee Décor, LLC and educational books for kids through Busy Books by Kay Jhanee.

They said they’re doing better now than before the pandemic, selling at vendor shows and markets like the pop-up market at The Diamond in Richmond on Saturday.

“For all of it to come together and we benefit so much, we’ve done four shows, and the response has been monumental,” Amandela Mitchell said.

The two have plans in the works to create a physical storefront in the near future.

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