Where are all of my creative people at?! Those who took a passion or skill that they didn’t even know they had until they were well into their adulthood and CAPITALIZED on it?!
I found my passion for fashion design when I was around 22 years old and about 8 months pregnant with my first child. I knew that I did not want to go back to work and leave my baby with a babysitter but I was stuck! During the time, my husband was not only going to school full-time to get his Master’s degree, but he was also working full-time as a RN. I knew I had to find work so my husband could continue to go to school without deepening our debts. I initially tried several multilevel marketing companies, but I ran out of people to sell to after exhausting all of my family, friends, and other connections. Next, I attempted secret shopping, but that was a bust. Lastly, I tried to get a job in customer service for a credit card company, but quickly realized that I had to be hooked up to a headset in a quiet room without a fussy baby, so that didn’t work out.
The following Christmas, I had crocheted a “bearded” hat for my husband and his brother as gifts. They wore them to work and their co-workers loved them. My husband’s and brother-in-law’s co-workers wanted their own “bearded” hats so badly, they offered me $40 to make them their very own.
That’s when I had my lightbulb moment! I loved crocheting and now I was able to profit off of it. I was able to make 1-2 hats per day while still being able to care for my little one. Once my husband’s and brother-in-law’s co-workers got their hands on them, word started to spread about my mad hat-making skills. Friends of friends started wanting hats too and I was swamped. I gradually raised my prices and eventually, I was charging $80 each for these “bearded” hats! My brand continued to grow. After a short while of selling hats, I made an Etsy website, and started crocheting all kinds of things!
Soon after the start of my crocheting business, I began taking an interest in sewing. I was able to sew much faster than I crocheted. I took a few lessons from the local Amish store and began selling sewn products, which BLEW UP. I continued learning how to run a legit business and grow my skill-sets through trial-and-error. I did not just wait for this “bearded” hat craze to run its course, I had built so much momentum.
Every step I took has led me to where I am now, the owner and creative genius behind Leah Maria Couture. Now, I get to work with photographers, models, influencers, celebrity photographers and reality stars. My gowns and other products are all over the world! It’s incredible looking back at how far I have come. I created an extremely successful, international business, I created a brand from my ideas and interests, and most importantly, from my drive. I CAPITALIZED on my skill-sets! I had no choice but to make my skill work for ME so that I could stay home and be with my baby. It is pretty amazing what happens to a woman when she goes into Mommy Mode. Creating a business is definitely not always rainbows, kittens, and butterflies. Of course, I had some major lows but I never let that stop me. I turned my lows into lessons to
learn what NOT to do to have a successful business. But, for every low, I have 10 highs. God has been so good to me and my family! I thank Him for giving me the strength to not give up when I wanted too and for allowing me to continue to grow to the point where I’m able to share my journey with you all! Hopefully, I can help other mothers who may be looking for alternative ways to help their families financially, while still being at home with their babies!