Three Babies & a Boutique
Chelsea Brown, the "mom-trepreneur" behind Emerson Kate Boutique is originally from Memphis, TN. She's been married to Eric, her high school sweetheart for three years, and they have three sweet babies - Abby Cate, nicknamed "Firecracker", Wade, also called "New Baby" even though he's not the "New Baby" anymore, and Andi who they lovingly call "Baby Tres".
Emerson Kate Boutique is a women's boutique based in Lascassas, TN. They offer on-trend and affordable styles online via Facebook and Instagram, as well as through in-home trunk shows. Chelsea and her team will literally load up the car and bring an entire boutique to your living room, office, school - wherever you are!
The inspiration to open her business came following the birth of her first daughter Abby Cate. After becoming a new mother Chelsea struggled to find time to shop for clothes. It was difficult to travel to the store with a newborn, and most stores were closed by the time her husband got home from work.
"I wanted to find a way to cater to moms by making fashion accessible to them AND to give them a way to find pieces that would take them seamlessly from a play date to date night. I opened Emerson Kate Boutique on February 25, 2016 - on my 25th Birthday! "
The clothing for Emerson Kate boutique is chosen with busy moms in mind. Versatile pieces, trendy styles, and anything that can be easily transitioned with a few quick accessories are Chelsea's focus.
"My ideal customer is fashion foRWARD. She's a MOM looking for something trendy and popular that works for HER every day life. I want to provide WOMEN with clothes as tough as THEIR toddlers."
In short, Emerson Kate carries everything she wants as a mother. The merchandise she selects aligns perfectly with her style as a young mom.
"I feel like I lead a double life. Sometimes I'm in mom clothes, like a graphic tee. And other times, I'm dressed for Vegas wearing something without a whole lot of fabric. I'm still trying to figure it out. I've been growing humans for so long so I haven't had the confidence to wear the things I did before."
Running a business while raising three babies is not an easy feat. There are difficult financial decisions to make, for both the family and the business, and there's the paperwork - which is one of her least favorite tasks. Learning how to balance everything and keep all of the plates in the air is a daily challenge.
"It's getting up early to pack lunches and staying up late to ship orders. It's learning to intermingle business and babies. I work from my phone a lot - answering vendor e-mails, working on social media, schedulING trunk shows. And then it's back to mommy land. Once I put them to bed, I continue shipping packages and sending out invoices."
The rewards absolutely outweigh the challenges, though. Emerson Kate's unique business model affords women the comfort and security of shopping in their own home. Her trunk shows promote a relaxed environment where clients feel confident while shopping for new clothes.
"My favorite part about my business is the mom who comes into a trunk show in her yoga pants and t-shirt, and she isn’t sure where to start. Then, by the end of the night that mama is working it and she looks good! Seeing women genuinely happy and watching them transform before your eyes makes it all worth it."
The opening of Emerson Kate has impacted Chelsea and her family in a meaningful way. She is most proud of the fact that running her own business shows her daughters that they can have it all. Her goal is to build an empire that one day they're going to look back on. She wants her children to know that you can chaperone the field trip one day and run your successful business the next.
"I THOUGHT IT WOULD BE EASIER THAN IT IS BECAUSE WHEN YOU LOOK AT STOREFRONTS EVERYTHING Seems SO GLAMOROUS. I THOUGHT IT WOULD BE THAT WAY ALL THE TIME. But THERE ARE SO many NITTY GRITTY MOMENTS. NO ONE TOLD ME I'D BE ARGUING ABOUT SHIPPING COSTS WITH A BABY ON ONE HIP AND ANOTHER WRAPPED AROUND MY LEG. THERE ARE UGLY MOMENTS BEHIND THE SCENES THAT YOU'D NEVER KNOW ABOUT. IT'S HARD WORK. DEFINITELY NOT FOR THE FAINT OF HEART. But I want to leave a legacy for my daughters. I want ALL of my children to know that they can do whatever it is they want to do, and that they can achieve their wildest dreams. "
Her advice to someone considering starting a business of their own is simple -
"Drink a whole lot of wine!!" No, but seriously. It's a RISK and a gamble, you have to trust your gut though and shoot for the moon. You just have to go for it - And ThAT glass of wine WILL make going for it a lot easier!"
While keeping her family first, in 2017 Chelsea plans to grow her team of trunk show stylists. Her next adventure is to build a mobile boutique with roll out racks and all! You can shop Emerson Kate Boutique via Facebook or Instagram at the links below or contact Chelsea to book your Emerson Kate trunk show!