Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and wellness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Shafeez Walji, co-founder of Another Room, located in Toronto, ON, Canada. Another Room is a cannabis accessory shop.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

Chloe and myself are the Co-Founders of Another Room. It's a cannabis accessory shop with all the goods you need if you smoke weed. From creating fun and functional accessories for stoners across North America to bringing nostalgia and delight into your hands, how we've adapted into a learn first mentality is what I can geek out on for days — With our most recent launch of The Prototype Shop, we have entered the world of 3D printing, where we have the ability to prototype in-house (literally in my house lol), test, and sell in a smaller capacity, so we can learn the right things before looking at scale. It's bringing a lot of the design sprint methodology to tangible product design and giving us control of our supply chain from end to end.

Photography by Bree Avery

Tell us about yourself

I'm a designer, strategist, and many other things in the middle. After years of working full-time in advertising, tech, and corporate, I was finally ready to take back control of when and how that work happened. So now I freelance on a permanent basis, choose the projects I actually want to work on, and run Another Room with my Co-Founder Chloe. Getting to live this type of life honestly is the motivation for me. It feels like I get to have my hand in everything I'd like to, and also have the ability to step back and say no thank you.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Seeing a product we created from scratch (The Floating Ashtray) sell out within minutes of launching. In the 10+ years of being a designer, I don't think I've experienced anything as validating and thrilling as that.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Knowing when to take a break. That mentality where you say to yourself, "I'll just finish this, then eat after," is detrimental to your workflow, but most importantly, it's a no-go for your health. Nothing you are working on is more important than you having enough food, water, and rest in your system. Please remember you are human, and be kind to yourself. If you have a hard time doing that, build ways to intercept your tendencies — I recently created a snack station on my desk (I refill this every week) so that I couldn't say things like "going downstairs to get food will disrupt my workflow."

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. If you have an idea, and you want to see it exist in the world, try to find other people with who you could partner with and make it happen. Bring others along, and build something better.
  2. Constantly be curious about why you're building whatever you are building, and how it benefits the people who will actually interact with it.
  3. Progress over perfection, always — What small steps can you take to be better than yesterday.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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