On mommy and me matching shirts and childhood stroke
Posted on April 21 2019
So here I am, five months into my business and on marketing strategy #11. For those of you who don't know me, my name is Karen Feldman. I live in New York City with my husband Daniel and three sons, 13, 5 and 3. I am a lover of stripes, high quality closet essentials, baking with my kids and recipes with 5 ingredients or less. I am forever trying to declutter my home, however, with my husband and I both running businesses from our NYC apartment, this is no easy feat. I left my career in commercial mortgage lending to start a business selling striped shirts. As a mom of boys, I am left out of the mommy and me club which seems to be reserved to only moms of girls. I love throwing on a striped shirt and also love dressing my boys in stripes. From there came the idea for a business making striped shirts for moms, sons, and daughters.
Our shirts are beautifully made in Portugal at a factory manufacturing some of the world’s best known striped shirt brands. I thought that marketing would consist of a few Instagram posts and boom, moms of girls and boys from all over would be scrambling to get their hands on our shirts.
Well, here I am scratching my head. So after much advice to the contrary, I want to personalize my brand, because after all, it was created by me. Normally a fiercely private person who doesn’t love being photographed or sharing details about life…strategy #11, a blog, here I come! I hope to share lots of styling tips for our shirts, favorite easy recipes and a bit about my son who has a disability.
My 5-year-old son, Leo, suffered a stroke at birth and was left with right-sided hemiparesis, or right-sided weakness. Who had ever heard about babies having a stroke? I hadn’t. We are all so lucky that he wasn’t cognitively affected and at 5 years old, he is a normal kid who attends PreK, loves Star Wars, legos and just about every villain he comes across. He wears an AFO brace to help stabilize his ankle and has a compromised arm. While it is heartbreaking, he will lead a completely normal life. I've never really talked about him to people outside my immediate family, however, now that he is 5, the toughest years are behind us and its easier to share.
From this dark experience, was born the desire to create something colorful and fun for families. For all the heavy years endured, I wanted to put forth something light and whimsical, like a rainbow striped shirt for little boys.
I hope you guys will join our journey!!