"Thereís a story behind everything. How a picture got on a wall. How a scar got on your face. Sometimes the stories are simple, and sometimes they are hard and heartbreaking. But behind all your stories is always your motherís story, because hers is where yours begin." ~Mitch Albom
It all started with a love for
I was born with a needle and thread in my hand!
My lovely Mama, Tommie Jean ... that's her picture
there in the left menu column ... taught me basic embroidery
stitches at age four. By age eight, I was making my
own clothes. I have sewn everything from aprons to draperies
to wedding gowns over the years!
God must have spoken to her heart and led her to teach me all the domestic arts early in life, and to give me the gifts for creativity and a love for learning, because He knew I'd need them when he called her home. My mama passed away when I was
14, but when I am sewing and creating, she is always
with me. Mama's Pocketbook is dedicated to her and all
that I do is inspired by her and the creative gifts
she shared and inspired me to develop. I can still feel
her poking me in the shoulders and telling me to sit
up straight as she inspects my seams! Thanks Mama!
Mama's Pocketbook I tried my hand at making fabric purses in 2002
after a neighbor saw a fabric purse at a fall festival
that she loved, but being the mother of five kids she
wouldn't indulge herself that purchase. So, I surprised
her by making a fabric purse for her of my own design
in her favorite colors. It was so much fun and I was
hooked. I started making purses for myself and my daughter,
and more friends and soon I was getting orders from
referrals all over town.
In May 2006, I was inspired go full-time with my little
side business of purse-making and sewing other fun accessories
and soft home furnishings. I named my new venture "Mama's
Pocketbook" to honor my mother, and because of my early
fascination with my own mama's pocketbooks. I think
every child is enchanted with the contents of her mother's
purse. My mother's pocketbook always held small treasures
and I loved the potpourri of scents ... the spearment
gum, her Wind Song perfume and even the smeall of her
Salem cigarettes, all that wafted from within whenever
I would sneak my little hand in to grab a stick of gum
or to snag a dime.
My daughter, Lauren, also inspired the name Mama's
Pocketbook, when she was younger she would sing my praises
wherever we went, she would ask people, "Don't you LOVE
my Mama's pocketbook? It's so cute! My mama made it, she makes
all kinds of pocketbooks!" (heh, SHE's so cute!)
Floral, Shabby Chic... All Things Pretty! I still have some of the fabrics my mother collected
and they are still stored beautifully in her antique
cedar chest. These fabrics have always inspired me.
I love working with vintage and current floral decorator
fabrics and I'm always on the lookout for beautiful
vintage fabrics to add to my collection and for my one-of-a-kind
and limited edition pocketbooks. Almost every item I
make incorporates a bit of my vintage fabric or unique
fabrics from quilts, and linens, mixed with current
decorator florals, stripes, damasks, and other texturally
interesting materials. Each and every one of my designs
is individually handcrafted by me in my smoke-free,
pet-free in-home studio.
I enjoy contrasting vintage and new fabrics and adding
trims, embroidery, beads, buttons, tassels, flowers,
jewelry and other findings to create a uniquely feminine
look and feel with practical usability. I add function
and style with multiple pockets, magnetic key fobs,
and other options that help keep everything organized
You'll love the quality and workmanship I put into
everything I make. I meticulously construct my pocketbooks with layers
of fleece and flannel interfacings for stabilty, shape
and strength. Mama's Pocketbooks are made to be used
often and for years to come!
What an Adventure!
Since I started Mama's Pocketbook in back in May 2006,
it's been as if a force of nature has taken over my
life! I love it, I love my work and can't wait to get
to it every day, all day long, and often times well
into the night!
I have had so much fun stretching myself, pushing out
of my comfort zone and really figuring out what I want
from this business and how I want it to grow. One big
thing I've learned is that it pays to take chances ...
to be bold and put myself out there in ways I never
imagined I could.
I entered the Spring 2007 MSN Business Breakthrough
Challenge II and WON their finance division business
makeover award! MSN provided Mama's Pocketbook with
a $10,000 custom business solution that helped me take
my business to the next level.
In August 2007, I added a line of Amy Butler products
including fabric by the yard, ready-made Amy Butler
purses, and sewing patterns, and in June of 2008 I began
creating purse making kits with Amy's patterns and fabrics
and they are proving to be really popular!
In March 2008, I was seleted to participate in an event
held by Country Living Magazine called "Pitch Your
Product" to which hundreds of entrepreneural women
apply to have a chance to show their products to the
editors of the magazine. It was a thrill to travel to
Chicago and be among those honored with that opportunity.
It was a wonderful learning experience for all of us
and I was thrilled to meet so many creative women.
In the summer of 2008, I re-evaluated and made some
changes to my business model. I took a look at what
works best for me in this business, what keeps me motivated,
excited and inspired ... and what doesnt! My joy comes
from experimenting and creating new designs. I thrive
on taking each fabric and finding the perfect way to
craft it into a useful, beautiful, gotta-have-it item!
So, I began developing the new business plan.
2009 - 2010 has proven to be challenging yeares ecomomically
and I have made more adjusments to compensate. I have
added more product lines to help round out my offerings,
and I have many plans to create new products,and to
co-op business with other women entrepreneurs in 2011.
2011 has brought many changes, both personally and
professionally. I have been named in the Top 200 Leading
Moms in Business by StartUpNation.com again for the
2nd year in a row. (I was named in the competition in
2010 and 2011) I look forward to the changes and developments
my company will take this year and continue to look
forward to the future. Armed with the motivation I gather
everyday from the hundreds of craftswomen, smart and
talented bloggers, and entrepreneurs, I'm inspired,
and ready to make big waves!
I praise God, My Heavenly Father, for the constant
abundance of gifts and blessings my family and I receive.
I'm very blessed and when you buy one of my purses or other creations,
you will be receiving a part of the joy and love that
is all around me. I bless every item I make with special
prayers for the receiver!
I am so thankful to have the creative energy and abilities
I have been given. Others have supported me at times,
encouraging me and even believeing in me, but even when
those people come and go, I still know that expressing
my creativity is like breathing air, it is something
I must do and believe in even if no one else does.
Thank you for indulging me the chance to say how I
got here, but enough about me now! I hope you will find
something here that excites you and speaks to your soul.
If you do, snag it while you can! (GRIN)
Thank you to all my wonderful customers and visitors
and to my mini-fan club on Facebook! I love and appreciate