10 Questions with Tania Yan, Founder, olive + piper | See Girl Work

10 Questions with Tania Yan, Founder, olive + piper

Tania Yan

olive + piper is an online boutique based in Vancouver for stylish, playful and ambitious girls who like sparkly things.

Although it’s founder, Tania Yan, is certainly all of those things, it also took her a lot of hard work and determination to turn her “little side thing” into the popular online boutique it’s now become.

In 2012, after trying to turn a few hobbies into businesses (and failing), Tania dreamed up the idea of having a jewelry store. With an already deep obsession with accessories and a mountain of jewelry, she decided to take another stab at starting a business.

She was determined to make olive + piper work. After deciding to leave her day job, she poured herself into the hard work of getting her business off the ground.

Today olive + piper remains steadfast in it’s original mission: to create a guilty pleasure that fashion lovers fall in love with, to share a love and passion for the sparklier things in life, and to inspire women to explore and celebrate our individual style.

From personalized necklaces to statement pieces to timeless classics, olive + piper has just about everything for your hearts desires.

We agree with Tania’s belief that the right piece of jewelry or accessroy can be that finishing touch, and that extra boost of confidence that gets you thinking “Girl, I look gooood!

Please enjoy 10 Questions with Tania Yan.

olive + piper


1. In the beginning, what motivated you to become an entrepreneur?

I really liked the idea of building something from the ground up and calling it my own. I found it exciting, challenging and fulfilling.

2. What problem are you solving?

Classic and on-trend fashion jewelry in a boutique style shopping experience with exceptional customer service. Our customers love the affordable prices in our curated and in-house designed pieces.

3. What’s the biggest thing you struggle with as an entrepreneur?

Knowing what to do and time. When you work for a company with many people, it’s easy to brainstorm, get creative and come up with innovative ideas. When you’re working alone, all you have is yourself — it can get tough sometimes and I need to step back and take a breather.

Time is another thing — there are only so many hours in a day, but so many things to do. Remember to focus on those tasks that produce the most results to grow your business.

4. What does a typical day consist of?

The days are always different depending on the projects I’m working on and what time of the year we’re in. But, I do have specific things that I schedule myself to do each day of the week.

For example, on Tuesdays, I work on my email newsletter for the week. On Fridays, I plan out the social schedule for the following week.

5. What do you love to do at night?

It’s hard to say — being an entrepreneur, night isn’t much different than day. Sometimes I do things in the day and work in the evening.

When I’m not working at night, I like to go out for dinner and drinks (how many, depending what day it is!). I love staying in and watching a movie. I need to make more time for that. A lot of the time though, I end up falling asleep!

6. How do you dress to exude confidence?

A great pair of shoes always makes me feel good. I live in my jeans. Jeans and heels are a winning combo. The most important thing though is to dress the way that makes you feel good and beautiful.

Just make sure you’re polished too. The rest is up to your body language and expression. Stand up straight and present yourself forward!

7. Yoga, strength training, cardio or all three?

I’m not really big into yoga. I love taking workout classes and kickboxing.

8. How does your culture/background influence your work?

A lot of what I know today and how I started my business came from my work experience. I finished school with a degree in Cell Biology and Genetics, and landed my first job at an internet marketing company.

You just never know how what you’re doing right now will impact your life!

9. What do you consider to be a life well lived?

Honestly, being happy. I think a lot of people have trouble figuring out what makes them truly happy — money, material things, are probably not it.

I’ve become very in-tune with searching for things that make me happy and focusing on doing those more.

I recently bought a book called 52 Lists for Happiness: Weekly Journaling Inspiration for Positivity, Balance, and Joy and it’s helped me learn a lot about myself.

10. If you could write your own obituary, what would the tagline say?

Never taking life too seriously.


Photos courtesy Nadia Hung Photography


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Alethea Robinson

Founder & Blogger-in-Chief, See Girl Work

Alethea Robinson is a freelance marketing & content writer who provides content strategy, blogging, and writing & editing services for creative agencies and small to medium-sized businesses. In addition to her freelance business, Alethea is also founder and blogger-in-chief at See Girl Work, an online community for creative, entrepreneurial-minded women. Before starting her blog and freelance business, Alethea worked in marketing and communications for over 15 years.


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