For 20+ years I've worked in the Corporate World, my last position as the VP of Business Development and Strategy at a software company. Although, I thrived on the networking, partnerships, business ventures and opportunities I created, I really wasn’t passionate about software.
I've always had a love of fashion but being a single mother, working full time, traveling around the world on business, I just didn’t have the time or energy to go to the mall and sift through racks of clothing, going store to store looking for the right work, casual, formal wear. I wished there was a website I could go to for all my needs.
When you're a single mother you spend most of your time outside of work driving your kids to soccer, piano, ballet, making lunches, snacks and dinner, reviewing agenda books and finding some time to spend quality time with them before they go to sleep.
I knew there was a need when many working women, stay at home mother's and mother's who were juggling both had the same challenges.
My daughter started modeling and immediately walked Toronto Fashion Week her first year. She quickly went international and has walked for the likes of Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Armani, Calvin Klein and so many local Toronto/Canadian designers including Christopher Paul Neil, Dicarlo Couture, Unttld, Michael Zoffranieri, Mikael D, Candice Daniela, David Dixon, LaMarque and the list goes on. She’s been shown with the designers or walking the runway on ET Canada and Etalk and watching her hit the runway fueled my love of fashion. I loved everything on the runway and wished I could afford the price tag. I wanted to offer women beautiful affordable clothing that they could mix and match with their high end runway or luxury brands.
I started thinking about women a lot, not just around fashion but healthy living and work life balance. I wanted clothes that looked edgy, sophisticated and sexy, but was also flattering even if you've had a child and feel like you're carrying a post child muffin top. Your body just isn't the same after having children. I wanted leggings or pants that were slimming and sucked everything in so I looked for thicker materials or a wider waist band to give women that extra give. I wanted the cuts to be flattering and concealing but comfortable and easy to launder. I knew I loved the fashion in Europe the best because it was different, edgy, had different textures and was cut better than the fashions in North America, although I have started working with a number of fantastic Toronto and Montreal based companies. When I started purchasing from Europe, people just loved everything.
I had a popup shop in Toronto and the problem women were having was they wanted to buy everything but needed to narrow things down from 30 items to 3 or 4. That was exciting to me.
I also wanted to offer women a social media platform where they could be inspired or motivated to find time to work out, cook at home and try new things. That’s where I came up with the concept of Push Through it Thursdays where it's almost the weekend and people are tired. I try to challenge women through my own experience to push through the pain, overcome challenges whether it's at the gym at work or at home. There is a clip of us trying Kickboxing for the first time and I have to tell you I was dying. But you need to laugh at yourself and pat yourself on the back for trying new things. If I have to be self deprecating or truthful about my body to the world, then I feel people will recognize the authenticity and feel motivated to get out there themselves. Women know what I’m talking about when I say “I think I squirted” on my YouTube video when I was running and laughing at the same time. Women need to embrace these changes and be able to laugh at themselves. We are often too hard on ourselves.
When I’m at an event, I feel like a fashion concierge. I make women try stuff on where they say “that won’t look good on me” and they come out and say “wow, I love it. I would never have picked this out for myself” and they tell me they "wear it all the time” and THAT makes me feel great.. That’s what inspires me to keep doing what I’m doing, even if it’s one person at a time.
Founder and CEO