Today we’d like to introduce you to Elizabeth Soto.
Elizabeth, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I started sewing a bit in high school when a friend and I really picked up an interest in fashion. I mostly enjoyed the designing part, just watching people on shows like “Project Runway” come up with these fantastic ideas and put everything together to make something beautiful.
It had been about 11 years since I touched a sewing machine and when our third baby (girl) was born while shopping for new outfits I was inspired to make her something special. My husband has always been extremely supportive and pushed me to venture out to do something like this before, because in that time frame, I was constantly taking on new projects around the house or wherever just to fill that creative outlet.
That day we bought a sewing machine, some fabric and made a 6-month plan to see if I could learn to sew, reach those goals and open up a handmade shop.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
It’s definitely not easy but totally worth it. I work full time as a Business Development Manager on top of this so our biggest struggle in the last year has been finding a balance with our family time (which is huge to us) and how many orders are manageable per month.
There is a lot of trial error when coming up with a new piece so although designing is my favorite part it can take hours. One of the hardest blows we faced was when an company overseas managed to recreate a few of our designs and started selling them for much lower prices to various online boutiques. Although, it was disheartening, I learned to keep creating and stay ahead of the game because if you do that others can’t keep up. If you feed into the negativity that comes along with the job it won’t be fun anymore and that’s the whole point.
Neither of us, had any experience opening a business before so learning about everything that goes into it and going through those steps have really helped us grow because this is definitely something you want to do right the first time.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Twolittles + Lou story. Tell us more about the business.
We make handmade Boho inpsired children’s clothing and we’re known for our unique designs, we use a lot of color, mix and match fabric and textures that fit our customer’s style. We’ve met some amazing people throughout this experience and are most proud of the relationships we’ve built as well as the growth we’ve had our first year.
Everything is sewn and packaged out of our home and as of December of 2017, we’re in about 7 boutiques throughout the U.S. It’s definitely an accomplishment that we didn’t expect but, it was a lot of hardwork so we welcome it with open arms.
Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
The handmade community is insanely supportive of one another and being able to reach out to other shops when I first started with questions, how-to’s, etc. has played an enormous role. The fact that people behind shops of the same style or similar will you help you out with advice or best practices is different than what you would find in any other line of business.
We support each other in the truest form because we understand the struggles that come along with being handmade vs. mass produced so, you really pour your heart and soul into every piece that you’re making.
- Website: twolittlesandlou.etsy.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @twolittlesandlou
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/twolittlesandlou/
Kalyn Mann Photography, Suzanne Bryant, Modern Bebe Photography, Laura Morsman Photography