HISTORY - the beginning
Even as a child I displayed more than a passing interest in design and repurposing; my favorite pastime was twisting and knotting my mother’s fabric scraps into doll clothes. As a teenager, I indulged in snipping my father’s jeans (usually with permission) into miniskirts and handbags. However, it was in adulthood, when “Pregnant” magically appeared on that deceptively innocuous stick that creating fused from lingering hobby to necessity.
At 23 years old, with a psychology degree from Tulane University, former addresses in Manhattan, New Orleans, Oahu, Raleigh, Miami, and far less impressive home décor, my husband and I packed up our paltry possessions from our Sunny Isles Beach apartment, crazy lab mix Coco, and my six month pregnant belly and moved back to the Northeast.
Determined and ecstatic to devote myself to motherhood, I delved into preparing a nursery for my baby girl. I quickly realized all the little touches, any décor outside of the basics of furniture, I had to create myself. I taught myself how to crochet, hand sew, and embroider, and starting experimenting. This compounded during holidays, birthdays, and lo and behold, creating, repurposing, refinishing, and upcycling began to wholeheartedly inspire a new life path and direction for myself and my family. There truly is an art to making and reinventing, and the product, in many cases, far exceeds the presence of its former being. Not only the foundation of King Soleil, the use of upcycled and sustainable materials has permanently changed my world perspective and helped achieve a balance in my life and how the lives of my family impact our planet.
HOW KING SOLEIL WAS, QUITE LITERALLY, BORN - the shop
After my son, Kingston, was born just under 2 years after Soleil, I knew our family needed some extra support and while I was totally committed to being a stay at home mom, the daily grunge of responsibility was taking its toll. I had a degree under my belt, but after some soul searching found that more than anything, family was absolutely most important to me and I was determined to find a way to work from home.
With about $5 of pocket change I visited my local thrift store and purchased a shopping cart worth of linens, sheets, pillow cases, and drapes. I cut them up and with a huge crochet hook from my aunt, crocheted them into rugs. With some hope, encouragement from my hubby and family, and a big 'gulp' in 2011 I opened my first online King Soleil shop.
Fast forward four years later, with the birth of our third child, River, and King Soleil has grown into something I am grateful for every day. From selling a few rugs, I now offer ever expanding lines including children's apparel and accessories, a whole line of crochet rugs with new and upcycled fabrics, embroidery art, and blankets. I have chosen to keep my shop small and handmade entirely by me, but I never know what the future will bring.
Balancing a business and a household with three young children and our newest addition, Leonidas, the Great Dane, is a challenge to say the least, but I cannot imagine my life taking any other path than the one I am on. I truly am one of those lucky people that get to do what they love for a living. I never know what each morning will bring, but I am always up for anything, I put much thought and care into every single item I make, and I value each relationship created through this business. I have been touched by so many of my clients, still get overly excited with each new idea that pops in my head, and am absolutely ecstatic to share my world, and that of King Soleil with you.
Owner-Maker-Designer of King Soleil