Monday, August 24, 2015

Moms on Mondays - Leah from Lovey Lake

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This week I am so happy to feature Leah from Lovey Lake!  I found this mama through her amazing lounge shorts and love all of her pieces, including her super cute bloomers.  She is really talented and has contributed items to some of the brand shoots Lemon has been a part of and Lemon just loves wearing her stuff, everything is always comfy and really well made.  Check out her post below and then go shop!

(Lovey Lake lounge shorts, photos by Qiana K. Photography)
What is the name of your shop and how can we find you?
My shop is Lovey Lake and I'm also on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

Tell us about what you make/sell in your shop.   
My main focus has been bloomers, skirts, ruffle dresses, jumper dresses, and recently I launched a line of lounge shorts and a lightweight lounge pant. In the fall/winter my primary items are flannel & linen bloomers and hoodie dresses. 

How/why did you start making these products and open this shop?  
After our son was born in 2010, and I decided to stay home with him, and I knew I needed a hobby. My mother in law gave me one of her extra sewing machines and that's when Lovey Lake started. 

How long have you been in business? 
I have been in business for almost 4 years.

What is your background (college/career/etc.)? 
Some college, self taught mother and seamstress. 

Tell us a little bit about your family. 
My husband and I met 7 years ago at a Kenny Chesney concert and we have been married for 5 years. He is a very generous/kind person as well as super hard worker and he currently attends medical school. He also worked in a cancer research lab this summer, which I think is pretty awesome! 
I have a 5 year old amazing little boy named Jett, who has the most loving heart. He will be starting kindergarten in the fall. I have a sassy "little mama" named Laiken, and she keeps us all laughing and on our toes. She is the Lake behind Lovey Lake. We are also expecting another little one in October and we are waiting to find out the sex but are really looking forward to adding another child to our family! 

How does this company help your family?   
This company helps my family in many ways! Being that my husband is a full time student, working isn't an option during the school year. Lovey Lake helps pays our bills during this time. We couldn't be happier with how far things have come, and I hope we can continue to balance and grow this family business together. 

Did you ever think you'd be doing this?   
No! I never imagined my little hobby would turn into this. When you first start, you strive for the customers and the sales, you keep pushing but you don't really know what you are getting yourself into, in a good way! I wouldn't change the time, work, and persistence over the years for anything. What did you think you'd be doing instead? Possibly a nurse?! I really don't know. Staying home with my kids was my priority. 

Does anyone help you with your shop? 
I do have one seamstress. She has been such a blessing! I was starting to drown and barely making the cut on my 2-3 week turn around time. Tired, grouchy and not at my best for my family.  She has definitely saved my sanity. We split the orders and I feel I have more freedom now; I'm not strapped to my sewing machine 24/7 and can give my family the love & attention they need/deserve. I definitely found more of a balance since having Nicole. I also have a "mothers helper" which is a 12 year old little girl, she comes twice a week to play with my kids for a few hours so I can work.

How do you find time to run your shop and create products? 
I used to work at nap time and at night, but now that my son is on summer break and my daughter has decided NOT to nap, I have my "mothers helper" assisting with the kids for a few hours of less interrupted work time during the day.  Then, I can also work at night. 

What do you love about this business? 
I love the interaction I have with customers. So many of my customers have been around from the beginning and are more than just customers, but now friends. I love the flexibility and options of being able to create what I want, when I want, while working for only myself. 

What is the most challenging part of this business? 
Balance & not feeling guilty for working when the kids are awake. Balance is key but hard! 

Where do you see your shop in the future? 
Steady, continued growth with a few more employees, and more wholesale accounts.

Tell us your favorite product or your most favorite thing you've created? 
I love the little lounge pants. I made the pattern myself, and after some trial and error I believe this pattern is pretty spot on for size. The fabric I chose is breathable and super light weight, my goal of them being a year round pant. Maybe a tie with my bloomers, I love having versatile products that can be bought a little big with room to grow, and can be worn for several seasons. 

Do you have any advice for future mom-entrepreneurs?  
Keep pushing! It's not easy and it doesn't happen over night, keep sending products out and never say no to any opportunity to get your name out there. Never say no to auctions, giveaways, collaborations, trades, or working with bloggers. These are all avenues to gain exposure.  {I agree!} 
What are some of YOUR favorite shops/products, besides your own? 
Oh wow, I have met sooooo many amazing women/shops on this journey, it's hard to name just a few. But, if I must . . . these ladies are all not only crazy talented, but so so kind and I highly recommend each and every one!  (All are listed as Instagram handles, just search them on IG.) 
For accessories:
For apparel: 
For shoes: 
For prints:

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