It all started with a little dream and a lot of prayers. And then a sign. The sign was Surah Al-Qalam from the Al-Quran. Al-Qalam means The Pen. Ungu is purple, my favourite colour.

And so, Ungu Pen was born and registered as a business entity on 1 January 2016.

I started out with publishing my first novella, The Truth Seekers @ Haji Lane, and creating content, workshops and training programmes especially in the areas of early childhood education and the media industry.

When the need arises, and the hubby also decided to embark on his entrepreneurial journey, it took many debates before we finally plunge head on into opening a lifestyle store.

But what do we stand for?

We stand for family. We stand for the need to give our children a better future. We stand for hope that all is not lost. We stand for unity despite difficulty. We stand for love and peace, and we hope to spread that love and peace.

Our start has not been easy. There were lots of sleepless nights and crying myself to sleep, because the fear that I have is real, and it comes with a capital F. I am a risk-adverse person, and starting a shop is definitely a risk that I would not want to commit myself to.

On the other hand, the opposite of fear is courage, and what I needed now is to dig deep inside me and find the courage that I have. I am courageous with a capital C. I had done many things in my life that had been out of my comfort zones, and this is not any different. I also know that failure is not fatal. Failure is a learning point to keep evolving and moving. After all, innovation is something that I had embraced in my previous work life. Keep problem-solving and keep innovating. That’s the only way to stay courageous (and sane)!

God willing, with your prayers and love, we will be able to serve our family, our community, the world (inshaAllah) and God. In the larger scheme of things, we hope that whatever ventures we are on, may it be a journey of love to our Al-Mighty. Ameen.

With love,

Maria