Finishing up this special mother’s day series with another very inspiring mama…Rachel Dodge, she is the talent behind House of Mia. A popular on trend children’s wear brand. We are some of their #1 fans, our favorites include the black and white printed organic leggings & matching turbans. We are so inspired by the success she has created while being a single mom to her darling daughter Mia. So on top of running a very busy business each day…her daughter also suffers from some severe health challenges that require 24 hour care. Needless to say it has not been easy, Rachel opens up publicly for the first time about her daughters challenges. We are so inspired by what she has accomplished and you will be too!
photos courtesy of House of Mia
MB: We know as a mom it is a challenge to juggle family and work…how do you make it work?
It is definitely tough, some days are harder than others, for sure. I think the key is, asking for help. I have a very supportive family that is willing to step in and help anyway they can. It definitely is a juggling act.
MB: What inspired you to create your business?
My daughter Mia, is the inspiration behind House of Mia. I call her the CIO, “Chief Inspirational Officer”. It sounds crazy, but the moment I saw Mia, I knew I wouldn’t be able to return to work and I needed to take my passion for creating and turn it into a successful business. I also believe that God has a hand in all of our decisions. Mia has quite a few medical issues (including a severe seizure disorder) that requires 24 hour care. My ability to design and create has allowed me to work from home.
If you ask anyone who knows me, they will tell you that HoM is something that has always been in the works. I come from a very creative family, and I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit. My first business was at the age of 9, where I would have my mom drive me out of town to purchase candy that wasn’t available in our area. After school I would sell it to my fellow classmate. I made a killing! 😉
MB: Competition is a big part of any business…how have you made it work in your favor as a positive part of growing your business?
I love handmade, so supporting like businesses is easy. I try to look at it like, when shopping for Mia, I don’t only shop in one place. For example, we have leggings from Crewcuts, Thief and Bandit, Target, etc. Mixing brands is what gives someone individual style. As for standing out among our competition, I believe our quality is exceptional and our prints and patterns are always on trend.
MB: What are your top 3-5 tips for other moms wanting to be successful with their business ventures?
For example I’m sure social media is one thing that has played a big role in that success…you mentioned you started in 2005 what did you do then vs what you are doing now that has created that success…
1. Do what you love. I started HoM in 2005 with a hand painted banner for Mia’s nursery. Everyone loved them, but I just wasn’t 100% in love, so I had a hard time making the business “work”. I have always had a love for fashion and after Mia was born that transformed into a love for mini fashion. Kids are just so fun to dress! I had a hard time finding hip ORGANIC baby clothes and accessories, so I created them for her.
2. Ask for help! I mentioned this before as being a huge part of my success. I wouldn’t be where I am without the realization, that I am only one person and the level of success I’m wanting to achieve, is going to take a team.
3. Be patient. Creating a business takes time. Set small goals and enjoy each milestone.
4. Be nice. The most important tip!
MB: Share the inspiration behind how you create any collection
Inspiration comes from everything… music, an activity with Mia, a vintage dress or pattern, or a trip we’ve taken. It’s never the same thing.
MB: What empowers you to be your best?
My family empowers me to be my best. As a single mom, I try to show Mia that you CAN do anything that you put your mind to, no matter what obstacles are in front of you.
MB: What are three things we might not know about you?
I am a foodie & I would love to own a food truck one day.
I’m obsessed with urban agriculture and would love to add chickens & bees to our organic farm this year.
I LOVE all movies from the 80’s, it’s a tie between Footloose and Dirty Dancing.
MB: . What are your goals for House of Mia…in the next 5 years what do you want to accomplish?
Honestly, I am blown away by the growth we have had over the past few months. With success you sometimes experience “growing pains.” In saying that, I’m pretty excited about all of the possibilities the future will hold for HoM, and will hopefully be adding team members in the near future.
MB: If you could change one thing in the world what would it be? And how would you do it?
Lack of compassion and bullying. As a parent of a child that could be considered “different” due to some of her health challenges, it is heart breaking to witness children being bullied for being different. One of my favorite quotes is, “In order to be irreplaceable, one must always be different.” -Coco Chanel
If people would start viewing different as beautiful and wonderful the world would be a much better place!