Saturday, October 24, 2009

Happy 5th Anniversary to our Rep, Shelley P!

As you may know, LILL celebrated its 10th Anniversary this August (my how time does fly!). And while we were busy turning 10 this year, our LILL on Location Party Rep program turned 5! One of our Minneapolis reps has been with us from the very beginning and all of us at LILL want to wish a happy 5th anniversary to Shelley P.!

Shelley has been celebrating all month long with special prices on her Fave 5 Bags and lots of great LILL parties. This weekend she's having her official celebration party and since we can't all get there, we wanted you to have the chance to get to know Shelley a little bit. So we asked her a few questions...

Where are you from originally?
I was born and raised in the Western Suburbs of Minneapolis, MN where I have made now my home with my own family. However, I spent 4 years (ok, 4 ½) at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa.

Where did you meet Jen (our founder & president) and Robin (LILL's vice-president)?
Robin lived on my floor my freshman year at Drake. We rushed together and both pledged Delta Gamma which is where we met Jen. We have been friends for a very long time!

What do you love most about working for LILL?
It has been so cool to watch LILL grow from its most humble beginnings in Jen’s studio apartment in Lincoln Park to the successful company it is today. It is an honor for me to have the opportunity to share my own personal account of the company’s history. I am so proud of my friends and the work they have done. And, in my role, I get to have all the fun. To introduce women to this company and the fabulous handbags is such a thrill! And I have loved meeting such great people at these events. I have forged friendships with a handful of my hostesses whom have now become some of my best friends.

How have the parties changed since you started working with LILL?
If you can believe it, when I first started, I had to take the orders by hand and FAX them to LILL headquarters. The other major distinction is that the brand awareness and gen
eral familiarity with LILL has grown exponentially. This is not a typical sales job, I am merely a facilitator. The bags sell themselves and the process is so interactive and engaging people look forward to doing it again and again.

What about family?
I have been married for 7 years and we have two wonderful kids, Jenna Grace (age 5 ½) and George (age 3). I was so flattered when Jen chose to name the Grace bag for my Jenna Grace. No George bag yet... but that's probably OK!

What are your three favorite fabrics right now?
Not sure I can just pick three, but I'll try. Ooh La La... Lime Leaves... and any animal prints (Kalahari Leopard, Wild Zebra, Lemon Zebra, Snow Leopard)

Do you have a nickname?
In college I was called Link. Its origins are not all that interesting but the name does come out every once in a while now among our friends.

Favorite musician, band or music genre:
It seems like right now we are so kid-focused all we listen to is Kidz Bop and Disney princess soundtracks. But music really isn’t my thing. I don’t even own an iPod (but my 5 year old has one…go figure).

Where did you last go on vacation?
To Chicago to visit my best friends and their kids!

Thanks Shelley for all your help spreading the word about LILL and helping to get our LILL on Location program going. You have been a fantastic assest - AND a great friend - to the LILL Studio! Happy 5th Anniversary!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

My Little Fashionista

So as the weather turned colder here in Chicago, I was inspired to create a new bag for fall. I have been hooked on the Hadley bag - which is named after my daughter - for a while now. When picking my fabrics, I chose a black strap with a brown accent stripe so I could wear it with either my go to brown boots and cap or my favorite black coat. I chose Cosmo Tweed for the body - a blend of berry tones and black/brown flecks for a pop of color that also works well with my fall staples. It's such a great carry-all, for both my things and the variety of things I'm "holding" for the kids. (My favorite kid item in my bag today is the comic section of the newspaper. My 5 year old was fascinated when he saw this at my parents house and wanted to save it to hang up in his room.... a sign of the times that he rarely sees a printed version of the newspaper at our house).

I got my bag on Friday and as I started to load it up for my first carry, my daughter Hadley, in her two year old speak said "ohh mommy, soo pretty!" She has taken to commenting on my bags and shoes almost daily - a little fashionista in training. I'm often taken off guard by this as most of her activities involve cars and balls, following after her brother. So I am rather pleased to hear her commenting on fashion and in fact, styling herself. It must be an inately female trait as she is very opinionated about which accessories should be worn with what outfits. I've attached a picture of her in a self-styled outfit. I'm still trying to explain to her that jeans under dresses is a trend that was only popular before she was born and that 2 dresses are not better than one.... her response - an eye roll and an "Oh, mommy..." And thus the next generation of mother /daughter fashion debate begins....
Jen Velarde