We started Love Well four years ago this summer. Staying up all hours in our little spare bedroom while Linc and Viv slept in the next room over, we combined our passions to create uniquely designed baby items. My grandparents (among others) don't identify with this, but we like to dress our kiddos like we dress. Not enjoying the characters, fun sayings and cutesy baby look...we were finding it a challenge to find much else! So, it just made sense to make it. We figured if we felt that way then other people surely did as well, and it was this that began our little company. A company we hoped could become a self-sustaining tool to help people in ways we couldn't afford to do on our own. A company that would help us teach our kiddos more about helping and loving people.
photo by Ely Fair Photography
People ask me often if I had an idea of what Love Well would become, and truthfully I don't remember thinking about it much. It was more of a day-by-day kind of thing...figuring it out as we went. It has been quite the journey, one that we can look back on now and see so many things we did horribly wrong...but were all part of the learning process. A learning process that continually keeps us on our toes, making changes and jumping into scary unknowns all for the hope of what could be.
One of our first pop-up shops in December 2013
Throughout that process, we've asked for feedback from the most important part of Love Well - you. And one thing that is almost always mentioned is our price point. $35 is a lot for baby leggings - we totally get it. We've never really gone into this, but we didn't land on our price points by accident. The process of fabric ordering, printing, transport, cutting, sewing and tagging is simply expensive. We love being involved in every aspect of the creation of our products...but it's also costly. Costly in terms of time and money. Our prices were carefully figured based on cost, paying our seamstresses a good wage, our giving back mission and what we need to keep our business running. And honestly, for a long time it wasn't enough. Love Well was scraping by because our margins were just not enough to support the cost of the business. This drove us to change our fabric printing from being digitally printed to being small batch screen-printed (one reason we are only able to print on white now)...and yet still our margins were just not good enough.
Our society is so accustomed to fast fashion - finding $5 leggings that will last perfectly fine through the 4-6 months our babies will actually be able to fit into them - that the idea of paying $35 is almost crazy. We understand. We buy the $5 leggings sometimes too because we all do what we need to do to make things work. And this is one of the reasons we have decided this model is just not working anymore - and that's ok.
Like many of you, our greatest desire and passion is not to have stylish children, it is to make a difference and do something that really matters for people. Ignorance is only bliss until you are forced to face up to the reality of your situation, and we have come to the realization that keeping up with seasonal (or sometimes even monthly or weekly!) style trends and staying ahead of the fashion race is not something we ever had the desire to do. In light of these things, we have decided to turn our attention away from handmade baby items.
photo by Slate
We are incredibly thankful for this four-year journey we have been on with you. Seeing your little ones in Love Well and watching new mamas get excited over our tiny leggings, bloomers, hats and headbands has been so special and fun for us. Baby leggings will forever be the root of where we began, the idea that we were created around as well as the beginning of the Love Well community and the relationships we have built with each of you.
Our hope is that we can build that to an even greater level. This community is what we are passionate about. Working with you to do good for people is something we will always chase hard after. We are excited for Love Well to grow along with our family and yours while we continue to work toward our mission of building houses for families in need. While leggings will be a thing of the past, you will find locally, ethically-made products - still tees for the whole family, items for your home etc. - created to inspire a growing community that is about building an uncommon, adventurous and love-filled life. Love Well has become more than selling babies leggings, it is a movement that we hope we can continue to be a part of together.
photo by Nina & B Photography
There are many of you who have been with us since the beginning...supporting us at our pop-ups, dressing your little babes in our designs...and it has meant more than you will ever know. We love being a part of your lives. We hope that never changes and that you'll come along with us as we continue this Love Well journey.
Much love to every one of you,
Jon, Candice, Linc, Viv, Elo and Vi
photo by Nina & B Photography