Alli + Evie grew out of my love for mommy and me fashion. When I couldn't find the styles I was looking for, I set out to create my own. After nearly a year of spending my evenings and weekends learning about fashion design and developing our brand, COVID hit.
Our launch was delayed. Our photo shoot was canceled. One by one, pieces of the company that my husband and I had built began to fall. Still, we forged ahead. We trademarked our name, launched our website and produced a small line of hand-sewn mommy and me dresses last Mother's Day.
While I was super proud of our micro launch, and appreciative of our customers, I just couldn't see a way forward for Alli + Evie given the economic and public health crises. Our dresses were designed to wear to gatherings - family birthdays, baby showers - things that just aren't happening right now (and, frankly, things I don't want to promote during a pandemic).
It was the first Christmas in my lifetime that I didn't spend with my family in California.
My daughter Evelyn and I put on our new mommy and me dresses on Christmas afternoon. It was chilly, but we wore them on a walk around the neighborhood. I felt happy and sad at the same time, like so many moments over the past year.
I truly love mommy and me dressing. There's something so fun and transporting - and yet so simple - about matching with my daughter.
Normally, I am a very serious person. I'm not good at small talk. I like big talk.
In my career, I lobby lawmakers on behalf of at-risk children and families. I have always been very civic-minded and interested in making a difference.
While I love what I do, it can get heavy.
When I wear mommy and me with my daughter, I feel light. It's usually the weekend. Or vacation (remember those?). It's a spring afternoon feeding ducks at the park, or lying on a picnic blanket.
In mommy and me attire, I am present with my daughter. I am celebrating color and beauty and play.
So, on Christmas Day, 2020, I decided that Alli + Evie would go on celebrating mommy and me matching, just... differently. Instead of manufacturing our own clothing, we will promote other mommy and me attire that we love. We are not ruling out making our own clothing again in the future, but right now, it's just too steep of a climb.
The good news is that I have seen a huge increase in mommy and me offerings since coming up with the idea for Alli + Evie. I look forward to sharing my finds with you!
The fashion industry is famously fickle, and at the moment it is incredibly fragile. I look forward to supporting some of the incredible brands out there that are making more and more mommy and me clothing, many of them owned by women.
This is something I have always enjoyed, but now I get to share it with you.
I promise to bring you the best mommy and me that's out there! In 2021, more than ever, we need beauty and joy in our lives.
Alli + Evie will always celebrate the special bond between mothers and daughters, and women everywhere.
Thank you for riding with us through these uncertain times. Together, we will climb our way into the light.