Today, we bring you a giveaway from SouleMama Sponsor, Monaluna. In Jennifer's words:
"Monaluna is an independent organic fabric company run out of a 100-year-old farmhouse in Walnut Creek, CA. We design and sell GOTS-certified organic cotton fabric for use in quilting, apparel, crafts and home décor projects."
SouleMama: Tell us about your background. What path led you to the work you do today?
Jennifer : When I first started my business 2 1/2 years ago, I was a little surprised at where I had landed. Looking back, though, it all just sort of fits. I grew up in a family that is very concerned about the environment, and that informed my interest in organic cotton farming and sustainable production processes for the fabric. I’ve always been interested in the arts and creative projects, and I love the idea that I’m creating a product that others can use to carry out their creative visions. Although I wasn’t an expert seamstress growing up, I gravitated toward fabric as a creative medium, and I was inspired by modern quilters like Denyse Schmidt and textile and print designers from Marimekko to Amy Butler. I’ve also worked for years in product design – from toys to children’s clothing to decorative accessories for Pottery Barn Kids – and those experiences taught me a great deal about designing as well as merchandising and putting together cohesive collections. Even my undergraduate degree in cultural anthropology has helped me to be aware of trends and cultural shifts in a way that can inform my design and business decisions.
SouleMama: How do you come up with new designs and ideas?
Jennifer : Lately I’ve been aware that it’s important to keep my mind open to seeing the possibility of ideas everywhere, and that requires taking time to just let my mind wander. It’s very easy for me to get caught up in the frantic pace of life, and then it’s nearly impossible to switch gears and get into a comfortable, creative frame of mind to design. I’ve been trying to reclaim some time every day for mental idling – while walking, or just staring out the window for a bit. It really helps me to notice the things that speak to me and inspire ideas and designs.
SouleMama: Tell us about your customers.
Jennifer : Because I came to this business from a design background and not from a sales background, I hadn’t really realized how much I would enjoy working with my customers, but it is one of the very favorite parts of my job. I sell both wholesale and retail over my website, but the majority of my customers are wholesale, and they own all sorts of businesses, all over the world, from tiny etsy shops to big online fabric stores. Many of them are manufacturers, creating products like quilts and bedding or children’s clothing or organic handbags. Because I’m still the only employee (other than my husband, Dave, who helps a ton but also has his own very cool day job), I pack up almost all the orders, and I feel like I have a little bit of a personal connection with each order I send out. That’s going to have to change soon – the business is growing so much that I can’t keep up by myself any more – but it’s been wonderful to have such a personal connection with all of my customers.
SouleMama: How are your children incorporated into your business?
Jennifer : Our daughter, Anabelle, is 2 1/2 now, but she was only 3 weeks old when our first fabric collection arrived. At first, I was a little overwhelmed by the idea of running a brand new business and caring for a new baby, but we all just put one foot in front of the other, and it didn’t take long to get a working routine down. She was my office side-kick, hanging out with me while I alternated between working and baby-entertaining. It worked well… until she started walking, and then things got harder. It eventually became clear that she’s much too social a kid to be stuck at home with mama, so a few months ago she started going to a Montessori pre-school 4 days a week, and she loves it. She’s not with me in the office as much now, but I find myself increasingly inspired by her delight in the fabric and designs. I just finished a farm-themed collection that will be coming out this spring, and it was so much fun to work on it while she giggled over the cows and chickens. She also works as our resident model, and you can see her here in the Llama Love print from our new collection, Modern Home.
For today's giveaway, Monaluna is generously offering the following gifts to ONE winner:
~ fat quarter bundle of 12 prints from our new Modern Home collection!
To enter today's giveaway, please leave a comment (one entry per person, please) in today's post. I'll close comments by 8:30am EST on Sunday, and announce the winner, chosen via Random Number Generator, shortly after. Comments closed! The winner is...
I would love to sew this wonderful fabric!
Posted by: Ava
Thank you, Monaluna !