Today We Introduce You to Eni from LuLu et GiGi
Q: What motivated you to start your shop?
My daughter was the sole motivation behind starting up my shop, all the store bought clothing made her feel itchy. So I decided to make her clothes myself. The funny part is, she won't wear the clothes I design, she would rather be in yoga pants and a tee shirt all the time!
Q: What is the story behind your shop name?
"LuLu et GiGi" is very special to me. They are the "nicknames" if you will, of my mother and mother in law. My mother in law's name is Lucette, and in France the nickname for that is Lulu. My mothers name is Gyongyi and there really is no nickname in Hungarian, thus I came up with Gigi. These women are strong and have lived through tremendous obstacles in their lives. They are an inspiration to me in so many ways. My mother a painter, and a cornucopia of everything artistic including being an incredible seamstress has encouraged me educated me and exposed me to so many incredible forms or art. My mother in law has shown me to see things in different ways, to open my heart and mind to new experiences and no matter what find the silver lining in even the darkest cloud.
Q: Do you have a favorite Etsy Shop (non-child related)?
There are so many amazing Etsy Artisans...it really is hard to choose. I was thrilled by the quality of some of my recent purchases, so for messenger bags I love: ScatterbrainTees. For organic Tee shirts I love: ZenThreads. For Vintage pieces I love: unionmadebrides.
Q: What surprised you most about having your own craft / online shop?
The amount of time you must dedicate to it. When I first started out, I thought that it would be a piece of cake. It is online, it is an internet shop, people will find it. But there really is a large commitment needed when working and promoting online. I spend 2-3 hours (if not more) daily. So it is a challenge to create new things, fill orders and manage my Etsy shop!
Q: What do you find most challenging about being an Etsy seller?
How to advertise and get noticed! There are so many wonderful shops, and particularly in the area that I specialize in, sometimes it can be overwhelming. But I find just plugging away, creating treasuries, liking other peoples work, belonging to circles, etc....really help to make you noticed.
Q: What's your personal philosophy behind your shop / products?
Impeccable quality - in fabrics, trimmings, and work. My garments tend to be in the medium/high price range. But the amount of time and work that I put into the details are so worth it. I want to make sure that my clients not only get a garment, but an heirloom. I take great pride in my work, I strive to stay original in my designs, I source out vintage trimmings from France and Europe, I find hard to get fabrics and above all, I try to remain true to myself.
Q: How would someone (other then you) describe you?
Wow, that is a hard one. I guess it depends on who you ask! I think people see me as a determined person, headstrong. Once I get an idea into my head....watch out. A perfectionist, who adores the details, sometimes over the top. Always thinking bigger then big. Generous and kind but fierce, loyal and a fighter for what is right, well at least I think and hope that is what people think!
Q: What music do you have on while you are creating?
I suppose it depends on my mood. I am an opera singer by trade, so when I listen to music I often have some sort of Puccini or Verdi opera playing in the background, I am very eclectic, so anything from Los Cincos Latinos, to Frank Sinatra to Madonna! But most often I prefer the music of my machine working away, my scissors cutting and the hiss of the iron being pressed onto a damp garment.
Q: What do you do when you aren't working?
Somehow, I am always working. If I am not sitting at my machine, I am sketching new designs. If I ever just am able to turn off (which is rare) I spend it with my gorgeous daughter and very supportive husband.
Q: Anything else you'd like to tell us or share?
I feel that I really started to evolve as a designer and I am finding my niche. My work is heading towards the more Exclusive and Haute Couture direction. I love creating one of a kind (or in this business it seems to be a few of a kind) Couture garments. I adore fine laces, satins, chiffons to name a few. I am rediscovering myself in creating art through fabric and design. I find my passion right now is taking the style of vintage pieces (from different eras) and putting a modern LuLu et GiGi touch to them. Classic case the Genevieve Couture Bubble shorts and the GiGi Bubble Blouse. I love when my clients drop me a line and say "create something fabulous" that is when I create my best work and when I am the happiest. I am not a huge fan of creating 12 of the exact same garment. I love being unique, and rare....I hope that one day I can just create those one of a kind gems on a regular basis!