I’ll never forget the day my mom told me “I quit my job.” Selling furniture just wasn’t going to do it for her being the type of person that had to have meaningful work. It wasn’t much of a surprise considering just six months prior she left a career in education after working tirelessly for nearly 10 years. Today, she believes her time at Providence High School was a blessing that saved her from the despair she was going through after recently becoming a single mom.
After her proclamation she proceeded to show me her new business cards proudly unveiling “Designs by Barbara Ann.” Immediately I offered my unsolicited opinion stating gently “that is not your business name.” After much deliberation she came to agree with me despite all the indication she was on the right path. After all, Chanel, Carolina Herrera, Versace all created brands with their namesake. Even some of the new household names include Kendra Scott, Tory Burch, and Narcisco Rodriguez.
Knowing my mom and how hard she had worked all her life I knew she needed to create a brand that could go on with or without her presence in the business. At the time it was inconceivable to even think that my vision would ever come to life; but I could dream and if the business wasn’t set up right from the get go for an exit strategy then it may be cumbersome to change down the road.
From these early beginnings Sew Chic was born in 2006 out of my mom’s home-based sewing room. The business became successful as a result of my mom’s sewing ability, customer service, and adopting an advice-based model for doing fittings. Her expertise coupled with my marketing and financial background propelled the business to heights we never imagined. Recently, I learned that only 4% of women-owned businesses have revenue of $500,000.00 or more. I suppose that puts us in the top 5%. I’m extremely proud of what we accomplished and truly believe if we can do it, anyone can do it that fully commits to their own success.