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I started HarpersLove on a total whim because I wanted to keep my mind going while staying home with my young kids. I was 37. My professional experience until that point was not in fashion or technology or marketing or e-commerce. It was in Financial Services, working for some of the top companies in that sector. I learned the mechanics of running an operations and important qualities of transforming internal organizations. I learned to question and think with passion. Unfortunately those qualities do not really help you politically in large organizations. However, it is those two qualities that led me to being this. "The Entrepreneur". Or better yet, how I currently feel, the wanna - be entrepreneur.


You see, I am trying really hard to not give up. Looking back at the first 3 years of my business idea, I realize I was learning and testing and figuring things out. I took a good long break from HarpersLove, 2 years because we moved to a Naples. FL from NJ (NYC suburbs). These are two different worlds. A year ago, I said to myself, I am going to try this. However, I can not do it alone so you must start figuring out who you can speak with and where you can go.


This fall, I started showing up at The Naples Accelerator, which is different than most others in that it is funded by government and requires very little from their inhabitants other than a monthly fee. For $100 a month, I sit in the cafeteria which is adjoined to the ping pong table area (to make it feel like Silicon Valley but who plays ping pong?). I liken this to going to Starbucks and paying for a daily latte. On a decent week, I go 3 days, sitting for 4-5 hours. I still teach 3 fitness classes a week, volunteer at school (too much probably) and take care of the house (I am the maid, chef, decorator). When the kids get out of school, I become the teacher, motivator, Uber driver and their social coordinator. This has been my last 9 months summed up.



Bringing the kids to The Naples Accelerator when school was out due to the Hurricane. "Keep the Ball Rolling"


Why I am writing this all down? Well, launching a business is a long journey. It takes time and energy to figure out all the new worlds that you must now become well traveled in. It is not about long hours, it is about digging deep and keeping the ball rolling. I have been asking myself why do I choose to keep at this? While some progress has been made these last 9 months, am I really able to cross this line and make this idea happen? Can I actually do it? This week has been a doozy.


I really hate to say this, but the Female Entrepreneur has to deal with something her male counterpart does not. PMS. I know. It is not an excuse for failure but it stinks, ok! The thing is all entrepreneurs must deal with the emotional stages of their businesses. PMS for me changes each month and this one happens to be the one where I am really down on myself. Feeling a loss of motivation. Feeling a loss of being able to dig deep. It is such an annoying feeling to deal with.


Well the light is shining through today because of Instagram. While everyone shouts about why Instagram is so great for marketing, I have noticed that it is other jewelers and industry folks who actual follow or like my posts. I started looking at their pages and this morning, a light bulb went off. So .....


I shall keep chugging along. Push the idea further. Be on the hunt for people who get it and can help me build HarpersLove.


My purpose for today is to share my real entrepreneur experience with others. The truth is I am in my 40's, have a great life and I am healthy, surrounded by lots of real love. I have no complaints but I feel like this is my major challenge. I know that there are others like me out there.

I am hoping to sit down monthly and write about what I am going through, emotional, logistical and share my questions as well as any insights I have uncovered.


Summer Goal: My professional next steps involved finding a kick-ass technology guru and advisors in fashion-tech.


My advice to you:

1.) Write your feeling down

2). Plot the big goal for your next steps

3.) Take a walk and breathe


Until next time,

Michelle

CEO & Founder at HarpersLove

This year, marks the official 10th Mother's Day that I will celebrate. I remember my first mother's day as a new mom and I felt like it was a new ritual that I would forever be linked to not as a daughter or daughter in law but as the rightful owner of this day. Being a mother is no longer a strange feeling that had embraced me for the first few years in role. It is second nature and something that I can not imagine not being.




When I launched HarpersLove, I did so because I wanted to be home with my little ones but I did not want to give up completely on my ambitions of a professional career. My career had been a corporate one and did not love me back the way my children do. I do not regret ever having closed that chapter to focus on the new ones that would lead me down the path I am on today. The question I ask myself is, can women have it all today? YES we can, I always am able to say.


Some women grew up knowing they wanted to be a mommy. Some women grew up knowing they wanted to break the glass ceiling and to do so meant they did not imagine raising a family. I think my generation believed it was one or the other and I am thankful that today, Mother's day is celebrated for women who can choose to stay home or conquer unchartered territories or do something in between.

My wish is that little girls see their moms as independent spirits, able to select what they want out of their life. At times, it can be difficult to walk the path that has been selected but the amazing thing is the path is open to be re-invented with twists and turns that can surprise us all. This Mother's Day, let us celebrate our moms, grandmothers and of course, ourselves. Let's raise a toast to every mother out there; her ambitions, her true desires and the love she shines upon her children.


Here are my 3 recommendations for celebrating Mom this year


Subscription Box - Give her a 3 Month Subscription that she can be delighted by.


Monogram Jewelry - Anything monogram is a classic and something she can wear for a long time



Disc Jewelry - Embrace layers with disc and tag jewelry. Add initials, names , birthstones to personalize each layer


Wishing you a Blissful Mother's Day! Michelle Mullman CEO, Founder HarpersLove


There is a great blog recently posted by Groupon that provides tips on how and when to wear jewelry. At HarpersLove, we design and sell pieces that should be able to go well with any occasion but jewelry alone is not an outfit. It should always add a little something to your look. In some cases, it can add a whole lot of something. We believe that a great investment in a piece of jewelry can go a long way with any outfit.


Here are three ways to take a formal piece of jewelry and wear it from day to night.


Jewelry: Gemstone Earrings - 3 Tier - Long


1. How to Wear Jewelry in the Day Time - Wear a ultra feminine Dress with 1 Piece of Jewelry - The Earrings Are The Statement.


1. Dress by Staud:

2. Dress sold on TKMAXX.COM

3. Custom Gemstone Earrings by HarpersLove.com

4. Shoes by UGC Raquel. sold on Zappos

5. Bag by Mark Cross Harley


2 How to Wear Jewelry to the Office - Suits may be a thing of the past, but classic, clean lined fashion is always a way to present at work. Add these earrings for a touch of color and sophistication. One piece of jewelry.



1. Outfit by Hugo Boss and Valentino

2. Outfit by Metisu and Escada

3. Custom Gemstone Earrings by HarpersLove.com

4. Bag by Strathberry

5. Shoes by Prada


3. How to Wear Jewelry to Cocktail or Dinner Parties - An evening out welcomes some bling but classic and funky can come together to make a statement piece stand out. Our three stone earrings added with a diamond rings and gold bangles showcase the fun.


The more complex the dress, keep it simple with a focus on earrings and a simple ring.


Last by not least, a dressed up shoe can serve as the final element of bling as well.


You have to feel comfortable in anything you put together.

Sneak Peak into these pieces: https://www.polyvore.com/cgi/set?id=237219768


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