This Teen and Her Mom Give You a Leg Up
Christine, mother of Jordana, was committed to helping her daughter find a way to support her teen shopping habit and become fiscally responsible. After watching the show Shark Tank, Jordana decided that starting her own business could be really great. This thought and an interest in sewing and fashion spurred a series of mother-daughter brainstorming sessions that resulted in Hemlets®, fashion cuffs for leggings. The new product is Jordana’s way of giving boring leggings a bit more pop.
Jordana serves as the company’s Chief Creative Officer while her mom is the CEO. As I speak to more young girlpreneurs I’m finding this is a very common arrangement for tween/teen/parent businesses. This set-up allows girls to learn about business first hand, but at the same time they don’t have to sacrifice their focus on school work, after school activities, sports and friends. Jordana is a rower and her mother explains when she’s not out on the water or doing homework she is researching fashion trends and selecting fabrics. Jordana took a break from her summer activities to tell us more about her favorite Hemlets and her future plans for the business.
Bright Girls: Did you have any sewing experience before Hemlets? What got you interested in sewing? If so where did you learn?
Jordana: Yes, I took a teen sewing skills class when I was in sixth grade. I made pajama pants for my mother and she loved them. I have also taken a few classes at Joann’s where I made my brother a pillow case.
Bright Girls: Do you sew the Hemlets yourselves or do you outsource?
Jordana: We outsource them, a man in Dallas makes them for us now.
Bright Girls: What’s is your favorite style of Hemlet right now and why?
Jordana: I like the black and white geometric design. It is simple but adds a little touch. I also like the solid lilac ones because they are very basic.
BG: Did you consider patenting your idea? If so where are you in the process?
Jordana: One of the first things we did was filed a provisional patent on the product. Since it was so simple we wanted to get it on record that we were in business because we thought that when people started wearing them, someone would knock them off. My dad filed the patent for us. I don’t know anything about the process.
If you want to learn more about the patent process read our blog post Three Things Mom & Daughter can Teach You About Patents. In this article the co-founders of I-Wear Charmz share their detailed experience.
BG: In our book “Your Own Business Can Be Great” the characters go through the process of pricing a product, taking into account the cost of goods, etc.. I would love to have you explain how you figured out that $10 was the right price for your product.
Jordana: Since I was originally the target audience, I knew what teenage girls would pay for accessories. I saw my friends not think much about spending $10 so I thought it would be good to stay at that price. My mom taught me about the expense of having something manufactured in the U.S. so we had to design the product so that it would be inexpensive to make for that price point.
BG: I see you sell your leggings on your own website. What platform is your sites built on? Is this a part of the business mom does entirely or are there parts of it you can do? If so which parts?
We have two online stores that my mom manages for me. We have our website that is a wordpress site (my mom designed it for me) and we have the Etsy store. I like the Etsy store because I shop on that platform a lot and I think that young girls like to look at the website and purchase. My mom handles most of the website for us.
BG: Do you have annual sales goals? Or will you continue to run the business regardless of how many Hemlets you sell?
Jordana: We do not want manufacture the product forever. We want to find someone who is interested in licensing it.
This teen has her an eye on an exit strategy. Maybe Jordana will be able to make that exit before she heads off to college in a few years!
Ignite the girlpreneur in your life with our book Your Own Business Can Be Great, get it today!