The Journey & The New Ollie Gray Maternity
Where to start? Do people still blog? Did I leave the curling iron on?
I could talk about how it started or the hurdles we hit along the way. Or, fuck it, maybe we just talk about baby war stories, who’s got a crazy neighbor or the best wine under $20. When I think of a blog focused on Mom, my mind goes to a thousand different places – that’s normal for a mom right? One minute we are cleaning the fridge or sending an email out and the next we are helping find the sidewalk chalk.
The chalk WILL end up back on the house floors for me to mop up later.
We are all over the place and that’s what the OG Source will be – Yahtzee! It will not fall in line or sugar coat the realities of #momlife. We all have our own journey, our own path and plan, and we come from different backgrounds. Embrace this, people. One thing is for certain, we are mothers, strong mothers who are all navigating motherhood together.
Don’t forget to turn the crockpot on before preschool drop off, daily Target run, and yoga class.
This thing started with me returning to the court room (I am an attorney by trade) days after our baby boy, Loughlin, was born. The pump bra options on the market left much to be desired. Ok that’s being nice; they were shit. I didn’t feel like switching bras every time I needed to pump, who the hell does? Some creepster at the courthouse trying to catch a peep of these swollen milk bags… Watch it buddy. When I couldn’t find a wearable pump bra worth a darn, I decided to do something about it. And when I say “I decided,” I mean my husband, Bryce, decided to fix this problem for me – what a doll.
A man in a maternity wear world? Crazy enough to work.
The truth is, we both got to work. We scoured Linkedin for designers. We networked with anyone who would take our call with questions about what it takes to launch a D2C (didn’t know what that meant at the time) company. We met some random country guy that said he “reckoned he could make us a bra prototype.” After all, he had a shop off I -85 that I’m pretty sure doubled as a storage unit, so pretty legit.
Don’t trust a business that rents its office space from a storage unit company.
What a colossal dump. The prototype looked like a six-month-old, full on diaper blowout – all the way up the back type of stuff. Aw, I miss those days… But damn, it was slightly better than some of the options being sold on the market at that time and it gave us a base bra to build upon. Small victory, let’s gooooo.
Kick southern storage rental designer buddy to the curb and find a legit designer asap.
Fast forward through a year+ of grind of finding a designer, a manufacturing partner, and establishing a brand – FACT; we named our brand after our daughter Olivia Gray. We rallied, pulled this thing together and arrived at a pretty damn good first version of what would become known to be The Anywhere Bra. No apparel experience. No consumer goods experience. Just a new mom and dad looking for a fix. A bra fix that is. Perfect. We are going to take over the maternity bra world.
My mom has a Ginger Rogers linen towel in her powder room that reads “I did everything he did but backwards and in high heels.” How you like me now, Fred!
Over the years, we have sold a lot of bras. We also made it a point to listen to our customers (moms) and create styles that focus on both function and fashion. Damnit, that’s part of my elevator pitch to investors. You get it though. I guess I mention this because it brought us to where we are today – transitioning from a maternity-bra company, to a maternity-wear company. We see opportunities to change the way moms view maternity, we get requests daily about other products that need fixin’ in the maternity world, and I guess it took us three years to get the confidence and sanity to take these on.
Probably a quote out there about being patient, earning your stripes, or good things happening to those who wait…
So here we are. We are taking on BIG tasks. We are also focused on the little ones, and we are designing and marketing products that have never existed within the maternity wear space. More to come on that later.
Oh, lawd, what have we done?
We will always listen to the moms that wear our products and even to those who do not. We will not be everything to everyone, but we will try our best to make products that appeal to all the beautiful, unique mamas out there.
This is the new Ollie Gray Maternity.
Change the way you view maternity.
— Kate A. Rech