Mom and Entrepreneur: Portraits of 3 Connected and Committed Women N.2

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Olistic the Label commits to promote inspiring women entrepreneurs. Daring to start a business in favor of a more conscious luxury industry is a common choice of these 3 women entrepreneurs who, like Camille Jaillant, creator of the luxury sustainable collections of Olistic the Label, are all pioneering entrepreneurs in the sustainable luxury field. 

Jordana Guimaraes is the co-founder of Fashinnovation, a platform for greener fashion through technological innovation. 

Dorothée Contour is the founder of JEM, a French jewelry brand whose graphic designs are made of Fairmined certified gold.

Ingrid Bruha founded her eponymous label to promote circular economy. Her bags and accessories collections are created from upcycled leathers and furs to limit their environmental impact. 

Creative projects, current questioning or how to better surround yourself to reconcile family life and entrepreneurial spirit: these connected women entrepreneurs freely address those subjects. 

Jordana, co-founder of Fashinnovation

Jordana Guimarães

Co-Founder of Fashinnovation & mother of Ariana, Isabel

Jordana, Marcello is both your life and business partner; is it easier to work with your soulmate?

It’s easier and harder! I would say there’s both sides to this dynamic. Every day we are building together the future we want for our family. The hard part is that we can never truly “shut it off”. The lines between private and professional life can become foggy.

Do you manage to maintain a certain balance? 

There’s no real easy balance in the day to day but we have rituals. Regularly, we take staycations: we book a hotel room to take a step back away from the office or home and our roles as parents-entrepreneurs. This allows us to remember who we are when we don’t have this daily stress. 

Have you felt a craze for digital tech solutions following the COVID19 crisis?

Absolutely, a huge interest! We are working with dozens of new people. Fashinnovation is helping them to approach the “next normal” through technology. Our April summit highlighted an unprecedented transparency from fashion industry leaders now showing their true heart. Small brands and startups whose business model is built on positive social impact are standing out and get recognized for amplifying their voices when needed. Collaboration and inclusivity, rather than exclusivity, become “new normals” in fashion. 

Do you think being a woman entrepreneur gives you a different perspective?

Certainly! Being a woman entrepreneur with intuitive and instinctive thoughts guiding me along my heart has led me to beautiful developments.

How do you manage to stay connected to nature despite your busy schedule? 

I walk every morning and step outside, even for a few minutes and I do something more people need to do: breathe.

Dorothée, founder of JEM Jewellery Ethically Minded

Dorothée Contour

Founder of JEM & mother of Gabriel, Ulysse

You have 2 children (4 years and 8 months old) what is your secret to balance entrepreneurship and motherhood? 

There is no manual. It’s complicated, but they are also ephemeral moments of your life that you have to take advantage of. My energy and personal balance come from being both a mother and an entrepreneur. JEM is my third child; it takes time and requires compromise. My husband and my family are a precious help. I might spend less time with my family, but these moments are more qualitative and my children can feel this positive harmony.

How have you lived the last few months?

The lockdown has called for a crisis management while I was facing more work than ever. It’s a turn to take and a management system to reinvent in a short period of time with young children by my side. As a couple of two entrepreneurs we had to set up a time for work and a time to take care of our children. 

What are your objectives for tomorrow? 

I want to make Fairmined gold globally known to change the lives of people in this industry. Beyond promoting ethical jewelry, I wish to stimulate everyone to wonder about the possibility of becoming more involved and want to embody a positive mindset.

What are your plans for the future of JEM?

I want to shake up preconceived ideas and rethink status quo when it comes to the matter of synthetic diamonds but also in regard of socio-environmental alternatives. Material innovation will be crucial. I am also working on a sustainable development charter and am looking to take up the digital challenge. I want to preserve our boutiques physical link, but also to reinvent it virtually in a truly human way. 

Ingrid, founder of the brand Ingrid Bruha

Ingrid Bruha

Founder of Ingrid Bruha & mother of Sebran, Kenyon, Elkan 

What’s your secret to balancing entrepreneurship and family life as a mother of 3? 

My boys are grown up now and they’ve always been quite responsible. As I was in the event planning business before, I am used to juggling many tasks all at once.

Do you think female entrepreneurship should be more encouraged? 

Definitely! We should have more support for women entrepreneurs in general; not just in tech as it is too often the case. 

What is your anti-stress ritual? 

I started meditation and stretching yoga every morning during lockdown. I also like to stroll in second-hand stores or flea markets. I love interior design! It is my other passion. But the best distressing hobby for me is to create or to sew new prototypes. 

How do you find inspiration?

Through colors and their associations. Nature never ceases to inspire me; animals colors are just amazing. Interior design also nourishes my creativity, I love to observe the colors and ambiance that you can find in homes where you fell the owner’s soul. Also, cultures and their costumes, I love ethnicity. They are never afraid of colors and so proud of their differences: like the Samburu tribe in Kenya.

How did you come to create a brand of upcycled accessories?

I was brought up by a recycled mentality’s mother. It thus came to me very naturally to use already produced materials to turn them into luxury bags. There are so many things that are considered waste but are just waiting to be turned into something nice! Good quality is always recyclable.

How do you manage to ensure the transparency of your value chain in the circular economy? 

We should introduce legislation and better traceability by labeling every product, like we do in the food industry. For a small company like mine, it is almost impossible and too costly to research the origin of every leather purchased in surplus. For fur, it’s easier because I only buy old “GrandMa” coats in vintage shops.

A common resonance with Olistic

The encounter of Dorothée Contour and Camille Jaillant, celebrated during a cocktail party, provided an opportunity to show the union of JEM’s ethical jewelry with the airy sustainable collections of Olistic the Label. The two women offer ethical products made from sustainable materials (Fairmined gold for JEM, peace silk, organic cotton and wood fibers for Olistic) and are both committed to supporting artisanal skills.

Joana Guimaraes’ innovative vision has found an echo in Camille Jaillant. During the Fashinnovation conference, the founder of Olistic spoke on the theme of fashion commitment to sustainable development objectives. From their meeting later came a virtual fashion show.

Ingrid Bruha and Camille Jaillant met in New York. Both share a strong commitment to sustainability and advocate the circular economy to extend the lifecycle of fashion through upcycling. The two designers wish to reinvent retail by offering their sustainable collections in hotels and ecolodges: unique and timeless places integrated into nature. 

All those inspired connected women innovate in favor of sustainable solutions to rethink tomorrow’s luxury. The unifying energy of these women who dared to start their own business proves that creating a company with a positive sustainable commitment, while being a mother, is within reach.