Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Women I Admire: Kelsea Slade of K. Slademade

One thing I love about the handmade business is all of the amazing people I've "met" (in real life, or just connected with online.) Kelsea Slade of K. Slademade is one of those people I'm so glad I found! She is kind, helpful, beautiful and beyond talented! I've mentioned my love of her clutches many times (here, here and lots of times on Instagram and Facebook!) I love that Kelsea's line is handmade, but high end. I truly can't say enough good things about her products, and I get stopped just about every time I'm carrying one of her clutches, by people dying to know where it came from. For those of you who don't know about K. Slademade yet, I'm excited to introduce you......

HG: How did K. Slademade originally start? Were you always doing your gorgeous clutches, or has your business evolved into the beautiful bags you're most known for?
KSM: After a year of a standard 9-5, and hating every minute, I began brainstorming ways to marry my love for fashion and owning my own business. Something that would allow me to leave the corporate world and give me the freedom and flexibility to create and grow my passion along the way. And thus, K.slademade was born. It's definitely been an evolution and I'm excited about what this next season holds for us! I hope to continue to grow and evolve over the years. 
HG: Take me through a typical day at K. Slademade.....
KSM: My mornings start with 2 cups of coffee in the living room while me and my over-sized Chocolate Lab check emails, catch up on our favorite blogs, and make a "What to Accomplish Today" list. The rest of the day just depends; sometimes its meetings, other days I'm designing and dreaming up new products, and other days I find myself behind the sewing machine all day!  

HG: Out of all the pretty things you've ever made, what is your favorite? 
KSM: Oh gee! How could I ever choose just one?! Of course I love the Fold Over, but you know right now I'm really into the Pony Tote, it's just so practical and sturdy and it's such a unique design. Word on the street is that it will be making a re-appearance this Fall! shhh.

 HG: Do you own one of everything you make?? Every time you come out with something new I think "Ooh, I *need* that!" and "pin it" on my Wishlist board.  If not, how do you resist?
KSM: You know, I tend to have a pretty classic wardrobe which doesn't lend itself very well to some of the neon colors. So no, I'd say I stick with the browns, and neutrals, and pastel colors. Every now and then I get an itch for something crazy bright and fun, though.  

HG: What is your favorite color? Do you find yourself incorporating that color into a lot of your designs? 
KSM: I love navy. It's just so classic. It's funny you should ask, because I find myself trying to pair almost every leather with a navy zipper!

HG: Tell me where you find inspiration. 
KSM:Of course I love to stay up on the latest trends, but truthfully, the classic heritage of the United States is so intriguing and inspiring to me. We're looking forward to seeing more of a classic Americana influence in our upcoming product line. 
HG: Do you have any employees or is it a one-woman show?  
KSM: One of my very talented and  gorgeous sister's actually just joined the K.slademade team in the last couple of months. She's amazing and has been so helpful keeping me on track, she's great at everything! 

HG: What do you do to unplug after a busy work week? 
KSM: I'm thankful for a husband who is so supportive of my work but also really encourages downtime. We find ourselves escaping to a lake house in the woods away from everything or we just enjoy being at home, turning off our electronic devices for the weekend, and lounging around the house with our sweet Lab.

HG: Any advice for someone thinking of starting their own business?

KSM: You should love this idea so much that it consumes your thoughts.  You lay your head down at night and wake up each morning and obsess over it.  You should be passionate about it and believe fully in yourself because if you don't believe in you then no one else will.  Be brave, take risks and work hard, work very hard.  If you believe in something and work hard at it, nothing is beyond your reach!

          You can find K. Slademade:



Christie Hope said...

Awesome interview Heather. I've been working on my handmade biz for a little over a year now and I've been following Kelsea's work. She's done an amazing job at focusing in on a simple, well made product and it's clear that focus has lead to success. I'm now working on focusing my passion into a specific product and growing from that. It can be so overwhelming to try and follow every idea. Anyways, thanks for the thoughtful interview and inspiration.


joen said...

Beatiful fold over clutches, but I love the pink suede clutch!

Kristin said...

Great interview~ you asked some wonderful questions!

KSLADEMADE is officially my favorite. And my husband has ordered me three pieces from her now. Thank you for introducing me!


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