BRANDS WE LOVE - SOLLY BABY

Photo by Jackie Wonders

Photo by Jackie Wonders

Meet Elle Rowley, the woman behind Solly Baby, the super light wrap used to carry your baby. Closeness, touch, being together and building that bond are so important for your little ones, and these Solly wraps provide comfort to take on your daily life while providing the essentials to your newborn and baby. 

 Elle made the first Solly Baby wrap in 2011 in the sewing nook of a little house in Salt Lake City after the birth of her second child, Solomon (hence the name Solly Baby).

After using migraine-inducing carriers that left her feeling like a packhorse with her first baby, Elle wanted something comfortable and chic to wear, that could not only best meet Solly’s needs, but also enable her to still chase after her toddler as well.

Elle worked while her babies were sleeping and while her husband, Jared, was finishing school – lining the living room with tape as cutting guides, experimenting with fabrics and sewing on her Craigslist serger design a wrap that was functional, beautiful and felt like her.

We were honored when Elle agreed to be featured on our site. We sat down with her to learn more about their brand, what inspires her collections and her favorite go to gifts. 

 

How did you launch your brand? Solly Baby really began with making  myself a wrap six years ago, falling in love with the experience, and finding every way I could to share it online.

What inspires you? The idea of helping women experience life with their little ones while retaining a sense of their own style and aesthetic at a time when it’s hard to recognize yourself in the mirror.

Favorite Brands? So many!! There are so many female designers in fashion who are killing it right now. I think motherhood used to be seen as something crippling for your career and your sense of style, but that is changing and I am so inspired. I love watching Ulla Johnson, Doen, Mara Hoffman, Jenni Kayne, Christy Dawn, Storq, our children’s line ARQ the list goes on!

Biggest Challenge of running your business? I am an introvert in my own way so the relentless pace of social media and “sharing” can make me want to hide under a rock sometimes. Still, I am so grateful for the way social media has opened up the business world for mothers.

Best advice you've ever been given? Well, Oprah didn’t say this to me specifically :wink: but in a speech she gave years ago she said to align your personality with your purpose and then no one can touch you. That really stirred something in me.

What app changed your life? I’m in the middle of a move and a product launch so right this minute Uber Eats is literally saving my life.

One tip? Be kind to yourself.

Your biggest aha moment? When I realized success is so relative and that I didn’t need to compare my definition with anybody else’s or let anybody else’s define my own.

Happiness is? Chocolate chip cookies! Kidding, but not. They really make me so happy.

Favorite go to gift for your kids, bestie or husband? Candles and a good book for my friends. To me that says luxury.

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BRANDS WE LOVE - COVETED THINGS

BRANDS WE LOVE COVETED THINGS

Modern, contemporary and beautifully crafted organic swaddle scarves, Coveted Things is a contemporary children's brand you MUST know about. When founder Meridith Layne created her brand it was out of a desire to combine her modern design aesthetic with functionality and the belief that being a parent does not mean sacrificing personal style.  She found it surprising that there were no contemporary blankets in the market place that parents could love as much as their babies, and wanted to create a unique product for creative parents looking for something more. These beautifully crafted swaddle scarves are made with high quality super soft GOTS certified organic cotton and printed with non toxic inks.  Their Swaddle Scarves are created to get softer and more lovable over time.  

We were honored when Meridith agreed to be featured on our site. We sat down with her to learn more about her brand, what inspired her to start her company and what inspires her today and the challenges of running her own business while being a full time mom with no nanny and no family close by.  She is one inspiring Mama and we couldn't be more proud to feature her brand on our site! And these adorable swaddle blankets have become our GO TO GIFT for all our friends and family expecting babies this spring.  

How did you launch your brand? I worked in the apparel industry for years before I had children, designing private label contemporary lines for many retailers including Urban Outfitters, Delias, Nordstrom, Bloomingdales, etc.  When Stella was born in 2011, I decided to leave my career to stay home with her.  We don’t have family in LA, and I just couldn’t stand the thought of not being with her all day.  After a few months I began to feel antsy, and needed to find a creative outlet.  During that time, there really were no contemporary items in the baby industry.  Everything was very ‘cutsy’.  It was so hard to find anything baby related that had a modern or minimal feel.  I had a ‘light bulb’ moment, realizing that I could take from my previous life and develop something that could fit into my current life.  Instagram was just starting to take off at that time, and I thought it would be funny to create swaddles with large scale prints that parents would want to take pictures of their babies on and post.  Voila, Coveted Things was born!  I started with nothing, just an idea and have navigated my way through this crazy entrepreneurial maze with a lot of hard work, sacrifices, tears, sweat, exhaustion, you name it, I’ve been through it!

COVETED THINGS

What inspires you? I am a true believer that everyone has not only a story, but an interesting story.  I am fascinated and inspired by the paths that bring people to their current situations.  We started having mamas (and hopefully dads soon) take over our instagram account about every other weekend.  It has been fun for me to sit back and watch their stories unfold along with everyone else. 

Favorite Brands? In my dreams, you will only catch me in lovely flowing Zimmerman dresses. However when I wake up, you will usually find me in Madewell jeans, and a woven zara top.  

Biggest Challenge of running your business? Balancing everything, making sure everything and everyone gets enough attention and focus.  I think that is just motherhood in general though.

How has motherhood changed your perspective on running your own business? I started my business after my first daughter was born, so motherhood and owning my business have always gone hand in hand.  I think when you have a child, you find this crazy inner drive.  Nothing will stop you from doing whatever it takes to be successful for your children.

What app changed your life?  Amazon prime now.  Once I had a toaster delivered to my door at 10 pm using that app.  All the play dough dried up?  No problem, 25 new play dough containers will arrive at your door in less than 2 hours!  I don’t have nannies or family to help, so my kids are always with me, when they aren’t at preschool.  Sometimes you need 25 containers of play doh to arrive at 10 am just to answer a few emails.  I wish it had been around when my girls were babies, it would have been so helpful!

One tip? Take a second to be thankful for what you have every single day.   At the beginning of this year, I started writing down one thing every day that made me happy.  I titled it ‘2017- A year of good things’.  It has been great, because so many little things that have brought me joy would have gotten lost in time, and now I can look back, smile at them, and enjoy that moment all over again.  

Your biggest aha moment? (see my first question) 

COVETED THINGS

Happiness is? Baby weight.  Not the leftover pounds after having had a baby, but the actual weight of a baby asleep on your chest or in your arms.   There is no greater feeling in this world than baby weight.

Favorite go to gift for your kids, bestie or husband? I love Michael Shield’s ariel photographs of LA.  We have a few blown up huge in our house.  This would be a great gift for any LA loving friends.  - MICHAEL SHIELDS

Gifts for Friends that always make me happy are these LE LABO CANDLES- This is one of my most favorite scents 

I have this set of wind chimes, and I’m telling you it is the most perfect sound ever.  I am obsessed with them. - CHIMES

This blush coffee cup - COFFEE CUP

I’ve given so many people this book, I love it - BOOK

Love these handmade soaps that are inspired by classic literature - SOAPS

I recently bought this book for my girls who are 3 and 5 and we read a few of the stories at night before bed.  I am learning so much along with them.  I like to read them stories about strong, intelligent, fearless women. - BOOKS

My girls are a little old for this now, but there is something about stacking blocks on pegs that is so calming for kids.  They go to a Montessori preschool, and very minimal, simple activities are a big part of the Montessori philosophy. - BLOCKS

My best gift for a new mom would be our ‘shit just got real’ blanket.  I always say that it is sort of like sending a bat signal to a new mom that you get it, you know what she is going through, and she is not alone.  - BLANKET

Husband-  My husband is pretty minimal, he doesn’t like a lot of ‘stuff’, so I usually buy him interesting design books or magazines.  We both grew up big fans of design/ art/ music magazines, so that carries with us to this day.  We actually started dating 14 years ago when we both worked for the Fader magazine. He would also enjoy a bottle of WHISKEY

When the kids go to bed, we like to make fun drinks for each other, so something like this would be fun - COCKTAIL SUBSCRIPTION

BRANDS WE LOVE COVETED THINGS

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