Everybody needs a partner in crime — someone to bounce ideas off of, a helping hand, and a partner for your great business venture.
Jenna Seitz and Bobby Lazar are just that and more.
Jenna and Bobby founded Epoch Trading Post in 2015 with the simple goal to bring photography and art to life through handmade home goods.
“Epoch Trading Post is a collaborative operation that takes two to tango,” according to their website.
A team with a set goal in mind is a force to be reckoned with.
The Origins of Entrepreneurial Spirit
The drive to be consistently innovative in an ever-changing world comes from strong habits and positive influence.
Jenna began swimming competitively at the age of 5 and went on to swim D1 at the University of Hawaii-Manoa. “Swimming has taught me discipline, how to create structure in my life, and how to cope with the anxiety of the unknown when starting your own business,” Jenna said.
An entrepreneurial lifestyle takes commitment and time. However, when it’s based on something you love that doesn’t seem so demanding.
“My mom is also a fellow entrepreneur and she is a big reason why I am fearless and motivated,” Jenna said.
Bobby grew up in Howell, NJ and went to college at Stetson University before moving to Asbury Park. “My grandfather was a successful businessman and entrepreneur,” Bobby said. “He was the one who gave me the courage to leave the security of my full-time job to pursue something I was passionate about.”
Jenna and Bobby enjoy what they do and have lots of support from the community.
“With the encouragement of family and friends, coupled with the unyielding support of my business partner and girlfriend we continue to grow our business each day,” Bobby said.
What’s Epoch Trading Post All About?
“This partnership was built on an adoration for life and we wanted photography and art to be attainable to anyone, from anywhere, anytime,” Jenna said. “We began making our home goods in hopes that photography and art could be something you can use, display, or gift away.”
Epoch’s items give off an individualized feel, coaster sets and bottle openers with stoic images of ‘The Boss.’ Epoch also offers flasks and travel mugs with iconic images of Asbury Park and tranquil sunsets — something that makes the home feel more like home.
With a versatile product revolving around interchangeable photos, it is easy to update their items for sale.
“Our favorite thing about our business is that we have the ability to tailor our product to each market and customer,” Jenna said. “Our photographs are always changing, new photos are taken on a weekly basis, and we can customize everything we make so our product will change from one week to the next.”
A Photo is Worth a Thousand Words
A photo can be a gateway into another world and allow you to experience what you have never seen before. A photo is a lot like a dream — it’s something you didn’t quite know you wanted until you’ve stepped into that world.
“Our dream would be to work with local interior and kitchen designers as well as expand our workspace (which is currently our home in Asbury Park),” Bobby remarked.
Considering Epoch has only been around for about a year, that dream may take some time and a lot of networking.
But they have the right space for that.
We asked Jenna and Bobby to describe the Fresh Markets, their answer was ‘fabbbbbulouuus.’
“Asbury and Belmar Fresh has caused our business to flourish,” Jenna said. “It allows us to get out there and meet new people every weekend.”
The Fresh Markets provide an excellent atmosphere for collaboration between vendors and the ultimate interpersonal experience between vendor and consumer.
“Our product was picked up and placed in two retail locations when a customer stopped by our booth at Asbury Fresh,” Bobby said. “We also get to connect with our customers on a personal level, hear their feedback, and see what needs improvement.”
Being primarily an E-commerce store, it is refreshing for Jenna and Bobby to sell their products with a hands-on mentality and receive genuine feedback which, in turn, helps improve their business.
Jenna and Bobby not only connect with their customers but create meaningful relationships with fellow vendors as well. “Each vendor brings something new to the table (sometimes quite literally) it makes for great networking. If we lack the knowledge in an area of expertise, chances are there is someone who can help us out.”
With a community to encourage their work and a drive for success Jenna and Bobby hope to make a picturesque future. Asbury Fresh wants to help develop that picture.