In 2006, Michelle launched Well Styled and provided personal styling services to stay-at-home-moms and mom-entrepreneurs. In 2011, Michelle launched The Paid Stylist which is a business-in-a-box opportunity that provides intensive training, hands-on business tools for professional stylists.
Read on to see how Michelle got started.
Do you work-at-home?
The “mechanics” of Well Styled is from my home. The “wow” of Well Styled is at client’s homes and retail stores.
How many children do you have?
Three boys: Austin, 14; Ethan, 7; Matthew, 3.
How many hours do you work a week?
Tell us a little bit about your entrepreneurial journey and how you got started.
In 2006, I left Corporate America and ventured into the amazing world of being a stay-at-home mom. In those first months, I quickly realized that I “had nothing to wear.” Gone were the suits and heels, as they had been replaced with comfortable ‘work out clothes.' Unfortunately, those clothes, while incredibly comfortable, lacked the style and panache that I craved and made me feel “with it” as a woman.
I put my style instincts to use and created a new look for myself that was both stylish and comfortable; mommy basics that were perfect for my new life as a stay-at-home mom. And because I went from a hefty salary and bonus structure to nothing at all overnight, it was vital that my looks were cost-conscious while able to hold up to playgrounds, play dates, and two-year-old tantrums at Target. After completing my own style makeover, I began helping other SAHMs that were in the same dilemma and, from that, Well Styled, was born.
How do you manage all of your personal and business activities?
I am an early bird and am able to work on administrative Well Styled items between 3:30 – 6:30 am. Sounds crazy, but that’s the golden time of my day when everyone is asleep and no one needs mommy or wifey.
Now that all of my boys are at school, I have 9 – 2 pm available to work with clients, network, and do research. After 2 pm, though, stilettos come off and I turn into rough and tumble mom. We have an afternoon snack, do homework, then PLAY or go to Kempo Karate – the boys and I all take a family class three times a week.
My Golden Rule: No laptop activity in front of the boys Monday – Friday.
What has been your biggest business struggle?
Wow, looking back, every “struggle” has been a good learning experience in the end. However, my biggest struggle has been finding the right systems and people that mesh and understand the Well Styled business model.
- Which Quickbooks to use?
- Do I really need a CPA?
- Should I use iContact or Constant Contact?
- Do I write all my web copy or should I hire someone?
All of that takes time, and because one’s business essentially becomes “your baby” you want to make sure that everything and everyone involved is on the same page as you. I’ve learned that if it doesn’t feel right from the beginning … move on … immediately.
What are your favorite websites or blogs?
- GOOP – Gwyneth Paltrow’s blog.
- Austin Tidbits – I always feel in-the-know with their updates. I’ve also admired their growth plan/structure to other cities. Brilliant group of women.
What advice would you give to a new entrepreneur?
2. Surround yourself with others who believe in you and your business concept.
3. Never, never, never, never, never, give up!
Thanks, Michelle for sharing your story! I love your golden rule: No laptop activity in front of the boys.
I'd also like to mention that Michelle trains others on to how to start a personal styling career. If you're interested in learning more, check out Michelle's website for information.
Do you work-from-home in the fashion or style industry? If so what do you do? Drop us a note; we'd love to hear from you. If you enjoyed this post — please share it on your favorite social media site.
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