Monday, November 24, 2014

Moms on Mondays - Stephanie from The Dandelion Lane

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This week I have the pleasure of featuring Stephanie from The Dandelion Lane!  Her pieces are just so colorful and her family is seriously cute.  Go shop and support this mama's small business!

My name is Stephanie Scurlock and I have an Etsy shop called The Dandelion Lane!  I also have an Instagram and Facebook. I decided to take up sewing when I found out I was pregnant with my, now one year old, daughter, Ryan Cathleen.  I was super excited to make her some clothes as well as other pieces for her nursery.  After receiving a number of compliments on my items, I decided to open The Dandelion Lane.  At the time of opening my shop, a few months ago, my husband was still in Medical School and so money was, and still is (even though he is a Surgical Resident), tight. I thought this would be a great way to work from home, as well as allow me to use my creative abilities.  

My shop name came from a lifetime love of dandelion’s.  When you blow them, they fly and you never know where they will land and plant themselves, and that’s kind of how my life is too!  My husband and I have been married just over four years and due to his schooling and now residency, we have lived in England, Grenada, California, and now Massachusetts so the name just fit.  The Dandelion Lane offers baby-toddler dresses and rompers as well as crib quilts, and I am hoping to expand my inventory list to even more here in the coming months.  


My husband and I are both from California and grew up together.  We began dating in college and married in 2010.  I have a degree in Kinesiology-Exercise Science and planned to go into graduate school for Physical Therapy, but decided to follow my husband on his medical school journey instead.  Because we lived out of the country for two years, I was unable to work, but I ran an after-school program for extremely underprivileged children in Grenada called Limes.  Meeting with those children three times a week and playing games, helping with homework, and giving them a snack was perhaps the most rewarding experience of my life and definitely the most eye-opening.  I never thought after we came back to the US that I’d be opening an Etsy business, but I have always loved crafting, scrapbooking, and creating; and so many of my family and friends are not at all surprised by my endeavor.

At the moment, I am a one-woman show at The Dandelion Lane.  I hand pick all of my materials and sew every last piece that is purchased.  It can be difficult to find time to do much sewing with a 12 month old running around 24/7, but I am usually able to get some done during nap time as well as once Ryan goes down for the night.  Ryan comes with me to the fabric store and serves as my biggest inspiration for my fabric choices.  I buy materials that I could see myself putting her in.

I really love Etsy because it makes it so completely easy for a Mom like me to open a business.  It’s extremely user-friendly and pretty inexpensive to list items.  Running The Dandelion Lane allows me to feel like I am contributing to our families financial situation, as well as allows me to be at home with my daughter all day.  Honestly, the hardest part is just finding the time to create and sew and having lots of ideas for future pieces but not enough time in my day!  I’m sure most moms, whether they run a business from home or not, can relate!  

In the future, I hope that The Dandelion Lane can continue to grow, slowly and steadily.  I’ve already had a couple of offers to sell my pieces in boutique children stores, but have yet to find the avenue that feels “right.”  I would love to offer my children’s clothing in baby boutiques in the future!  I love custom creating dresses, rompers, and quilts to fit the ideas of my customers.  I also enjoy the challenge of finding the right materials and patterns to fit someone else's idea.  It can be hard at times, but it is so fun when the customer's idea and my eye for material meet.

My advice for fellow mom-entrepreneurs, or moms that are thinking about opening a business, is to just go for it.  You’ll never know whether you can find success until you try, and things like Etsy make it super easy to start.  I figured the worst thing that could happen was I’d list a few items and they’d sit there for a few months and no one would purchase them.  Luckily, that wasn’t the case with The Dandelion Lane, but even if it was, I would have regretted not putting myself out there.

Some of my other favorite shops include Ryleigh and Rue and Snuggle Bugs Bowtique.  Both offer the most adorable headbands for your littles.  I also just recently stumbled upon Maven Dolls.  Lee can custom make a Maven for you, I ordered a Maven Ryan for my daughter’s first birthday.  Her talent and eye for beauty is simply unbelievable!
Thanks Stephanie, I wish you all the best!

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