Esther Vallins-Wright, born and raised in Toronto, is the business owner at Forever Fairest. She has always had a passion for performing, and is a graduate from Randolph College for the Performing Arts.
In 2012, one of Esther’s best friends founded a company called Forever Fairest. They have everyone’s favourite Princess characters, and “bring fairytales to life” by attending birthday parties & events, in addition to volunteering their time at places like Sick Kids Hospital.
Originally, Esther started with Forever Fairest as a Princess, then, in 2016 she had the opportunity to buy the company from her friend.
“It really has been a dream come true. I was able to combine my two passions of musical theatre, and fairytales, and I couldn’t be happier with the outcome.” – Esther
As much as she loves being a business owner, she says it comes with its obstacles:
“One thing that can be challenging is really trying to explain to people how detailed and constant the job is. I wish I could shout it from the rooftops that this business is so much more complex and multi-faceted than donning a halloween costume and smiling for a photo or two.” – Esther
In addition to attending the parties, Esther spends her time following up with past clients, connecting with upcoming clients and booking future parties. Not only that, but she is in charge of all the social media, advertising, marketing, practicing specific make-up looks, hand-washing the expensive costumes, re-styling the wigs and rehearsing the Princesses.
“It’s a 24/7 job that never stops!” – Esther
Most of the costumes are over $1000, and Esther spends months searching all over the world for the perfect pieces. Styling a Princess wig sometimes takes her 5-8hrs! Esther would love to learn to sew her own costumes and become a professional wig stylist, both to benefit the company. You can definitely tell her work pays off in these phenomenal pictures of the Princesses!
In 2018, Esther is planning on expanding Forever Fairest in terms of her character roster and areas that they service. Right now they offer Princess parties in the Greater Toronto Area, and she hopes to expand that to Hamilton and Niagara very soon.
What are some of the best rewards of being the Business Owner at Forever Fairest?
“This is my dream job and I wouldn’t give it up for the world. Being able to provide a little pixie dust for these amazing kids, and seeing their faces when they really believe their favourite Princess has come to spend a day with them, is worth every knot in a wig I have to brush through, worth every moment researching to find the perfect costume, and worth every moment studying the character until we can portray them perfectly. I think my favourite thing though, is being able to really inspire and empower these children. As Princesses, we are the characters they’ve seen and read about, and they look up to us. So I try to compliment all the kids based on their personalities, instilling things like kindness, bravery, listening to others, and sharing. Seeing a child smile when their favourite Princess tells them how courageous they are, or how they seem like a wonderful big sister, is really a moment that you can tell is shaping them into being the wonderful, unique person that they are.”
Any advice for aspiring entrepreneurs?
“If you want to be an entrepreneur, be prepared for your business to take over every aspect of your life. Especially in the first few years, it requires all your dollars and cents, all your undivided attention, every skill set you have, and every skill set you didn’t know you needed to have, and there’s going to be days when you wonder why you decided to start your business, and you’ll want to throw in the towel. So my advice is – know with 100,000% of your entire being that this is what you want to do. Then think of the things you like doing (buying a new outfit, getting highlights, going out to new restaurants, taking a long weekend away), and honestly ask yourself if you’re okay giving that up for an indefinite period of time. You have to be so committed to your business, especially in the first few years, that you have to be okay with missing out on other facets of life here and there. It’s like a seed; it needs a lot of love, nurturing, and attention in the beginning if it has any hope of growing, and eventually blossoming.”
Who inspires you?
I really love Kristen Bell, because she really seems like a solid person. She’s clearly had tons of success in her life, but no questions asked, doesn’t even think, will lend a helping hand. When Hurricane Irma hit this year she was near the centre of the storm and did she sequester herself in her hotel room or try to get special treatment? Nope. She went and rescued her friend Josh Gad’s parents, and put on a ‘Frozen’ concert for a bunch of people who were in shelters, and ran games of Bingo. We live in a world where everyone is constantly out for “number one”, and she really is an inspiring example of working hard and being nice to people. Which just so happens to lead me to your next question!
My favourite quote is “Work hard and be nice to people.” It really is as simple as that. Simple in concept, though sometimes a little more difficult in application. It’s so easy to get caught up in the monotony of our days, or the constant uphill battle of the small business(es) we run. We don’t realize that we can, while working hard to be a (kickass) entrepreneur and devoting our every breath to it, smile, or hold the door for someone, or listen to a friend who needs an ear.
I was Princess Anna at a Forever Fairest birthday party this year! It was so much fun and the level of professionalism from Esther was such a lovely breath of fresh air! I would highly recommend her company!
Want to know more/find out how to book a party?
Visit the website, or follow Forever Fairest on Instagram and Facebook for more magical, beautiful photos of all our favourite Princesses!