Thursday, April 24, 2014

Meet Nicole // Dot Dot Smile

I haven't been able to update as often as I'd hoped lately, but being a dance teacher in the middle of competition season, and preparing for recital has been a tad bit stressful! Not to mention being a SAH mom at the same time. Sometimes my head is spinning, but I have not forgotten to share with you my favorites... just has to be at the right time :) So without further delay, I bring you... Dot Dot Smile!! I'm positive you have heard of the company before, probably you've even bought from them! I wouldn't be surprised at all ;) But do you know Nicole? When you buy these amazing leggings, skirts, dresses, etc from Dot Dot Smile, you are supporting a dream, a mommy, working to provide for her family and doing what she loves! We'll get to her in a minute, but first, let me show you some of the great threads she creates just in case you haven't seen them before!!

I mean, who doesn't love a good black and white print?

I must say the fits are just perfect! And did I mention these leggings are the softest things I own!! For real.


aaannnd these two crazies have a pair of their own leggings as well! So stretchy and cozy! And duh boys can rock them too!

Basically, there's some kind of magic she puts in the material that she makes these great items with because they fit too too well and feel like butter! Not only that but you HAVE to check out all the prints that she has available! They are just the cutest and not what you would typically be able to find in the average store.



Nicole is extremely hard working and dedicated! She's also fabulous, adventurous, and funny! Its obvious that her personality comes out in the clothes that she creates and I LOVE that! She's just the sweetest and so talented! I love that she had a vision and dove after it! Ok ok, read about her yourself... meet Nicole...


Nicole and her cute as ever family!!


How did Dot Dot Smile come about?
I launched Dotdotsmile one year ago this month (March 2013) I was sitting in my family room the night after Super Bowl Sunday. I just put my girls down & was enjoying a little time alone before I went to bed. January is a very slow month for my other business.. I do Hair & Make-up for weddings, & I still do that as well. I have been doing weddings & hair for 9 years. Anyway.. Since it was slow season we were having a tough time financially. I remember checking out IG & looking at all the cute children's clothing items & feeling sad that I couldn't get any for my little girls... Right then the idea to start my own children's clothing line rushed into my brain like it was meant to be. (My Mom is the owner of an adult clothing line called LuLaRoe.. so starting my children's clothing line was a little easier with her connections) As soon as I got that thought I rushed to grab a pencil & paper & started making notes & sketches. I was SO excited. The very next morning I ran to Down Town LA & met with pattern designers & start making my samples. It was very scary because I used all of our savings to start DDS. It was a HUGE leap of faith & I am SO happy & thankful I made that leap. DDS has been so much fun & such a huge blessing in out lives. Once the samples were finished, I started production & launched on Instagram March 2013  it blew up.. We could barely keep up with order.. it was SO exciting.  I especially love having DDS because our items are one of a kind. You will not be able to find them anywhere but here. They are super stylish & speak for there own when your child wears our items. You don't have to had much fuss to dress our items up. They are super comfortable & trendy.   (long story short)  :) 
 
Is there meaning behind the name? If so do share :)
Yes, When I started Dotdotsmile, I was unsure on the name.. I had about 20 to choose from but they were all made up fun names that just didn't scream the line! At the time I was teaching my 3 year old daughter how to draw happy faces, I would say to her over & over " Circle, dot, dot, smile" for making the happy face.. she would then walk around the house repeating over & over " Dot, dot, smile" . Then in the middle of the night one night, my husband woke me up & said " Honey, I know the name for your company.. Dotdotsmile!" Right then I knew this was the name! I was so thrilled!! Its a cute name with a meaning behind it! 

What are some things that you've learned from growing your own business?
Oh my gosh!! Where do I start... well first of all, time management. Learning how to make my children & family first priority & not stressing about my businesses. Being in the moment & not thinking of work while with my kids & husband. Using my time wisely while the girls are napping/sleeping & at school. I only have a 3 hour time block to get things done, so I need to jump on it & be productive. Also, letting go & knowing that I cannot always be in control. I recently hired an employee to help with orders & such. It has been a HUGE help but it's been hard to let go & not be in control. I actually feel normal for once. Going to bed at a decent hour (Before 2AM) haha!  I have also learned to be more creative.. I have a very creative mind & I love using this in DDS. It has been so fun to let go & use DDS as a creative outlet. 
Another important thing I have learned with DDS & owning my own businesses is to have faith.. there are too many times when it is slow & you just have to remind yourself that it will pick up. You have to have faith that things will work itself out, as long as you are doing your part & working hard, it will ll be ok!

Whats a typical day in the life of Nicole?
On a good day I try to wake up & work out at 6AM (Doesn't happen too often) 
Normally my oldest daughter wakes us up around 7AM
I put gym clothes on, & start making breakfast for my kids & hubby while the baby is sleeping & husband is getting ready for work. I'm a juicer, so I try to juice every morning too! I then work out.. Normally at home (Lately Brazilian Butt Lift does the job.. haha!) I then clean the house, I feel like I can't relax until things are put away. I then get the kids dressed & get myself ready for the day. I'm the kind of person that gets ready  everyday even if we have nothing to do that day, I feel so much better about myself when I get myself dressed. Weird.. I know!  I got it from my mama! Then I try to get out & do something fun with my kids... park, mall, library, play date, Disneyland, Beach.. Whatever.. just something to keep them active & out of the house. This is also when we run errands! I then come home make the kids & myself lunch. After lunch I put the girls down for naps/ quiet time & I head to our office to get some work done. My girls normally nap for 3 hours, so I have only 3 hours to get stuff done. Some days I have a Nanny come to the house if I have clients at my studio ( Since I still do weddings!) or if I just need to get a lot of work done or head to LA to our manufacturer to finalize details on the upcoming DDS items or shopping for new fabrics!... its a big help!  I try to stay focused when I am working.. I get distracted so easily. Once the girls wake from their nap, We have snack & go for a walk or play in the back yard until its dinner time. I then make dinner, & daddy comes home.. we try to eat dinner all together every night. Then bath time & bed time for the girls, then alone time for Mommy & daddy.. We try to set time aside for us to spend with each other.. its so easy to forget about your spouse when you are so busy with work & kids. Then my hubby goes to the gym & I either read, catch up on TV shows or work!! Since I hired an Employee for DDS, I no longer have to stay up late working.. I actually can get 8 hours of sleep. Its so nice. My DDS helper comes 3 days a week for a few hours. Annnd thats a typical day in the life of Nicole!! :) 

What is something super quirky about you?
OMG.. hahah I am a total nerd.. I love to laugh & make others laugh too. I love dancing & having dance parties with my kids.. I always make silly faces at my kids & do whatever it takes to make them laugh too! hmmmm.. I also love fashion, I love mixing & matching colors & patterns in a weird way that works. I do the same when I dress my kids too! Oh & I love cheesy jokes too! Like the Laffy taffy kind! haha!  I am also a big foodie, asks anyone that knows me! I love trying new food & eating fabulous! 

Who/what has inspired you the most along your journey?
Definitely my Mom! She has always been a entrepreneur & she is always encouraging her children ( There are 7 of us) to step out of the box & be your own boss. Like I said, she is the owner of LuLaRoe & it has been so inspiring to see her success & the growth of her business. Its exciting that,  that could be the future of DDS as well.  I am also inspired by my older sister Amelia. She is an amazing Wedding Photographer here in Southern CA & she is  a mom of 3. She has the work/ family balance life perfected.. I am so inspired with her faith & patience as a working mom! I am also inspired by all of the other amazing working moms & shops out there. IG has been so great to meet some of the most amazing & talented women in this world. I am so inspired & uplifted by the success of others & it so great to see that! 

If you could have any super power what would it be?
I wish I had the super power to have my house clean by snapping my fingers... I feel like cleaning my house takes up SO much time.  And I just read that Bethany from Tiny Bandits Kids  said the same thing... Man the life of a working mom! hahah! The things that make us happy! :) 


LOVED reading Nicole! Great advice... time management and having faith are so so necessary when starting something on your own 100%! I think you are such an inspiration! Thanks so much for sharing all of that with us! For all you lovely readers out there, dying to grab a pair of leggings for yourself, or maybe a skirt, dress, or leggings for your little? Just head over to dotdotsmile.com and use the code, "FREESHIPPING" to, yes you guessed, receive free shipping on your order! Happy shopping! And thanks so much Nicole!

1 comment:

  1. It's amazing to look back and see how DotDotSmile has grown in such a few years! I joined as a merchendiser and it has been a wonderful experience for us. I am sharing all about my journey joining dotdotsmile over at http://www.smilewithheather.com
    Thanks again for recording what's now a bit of "company history!"

    ReplyDelete