Monday, September 27, 2010

{Lehla Shop}

I am SO excited about my very first addition to {my favorite things}... Lehla Shop!! I met the owner and fabulous designer, Lisa Hill, on Twitter and we very quickly connected. A Jersey gal at heart like me, she is not only as sweet as pie but she is chock full o' talent too! What drew me to her shop was the amazing & beautiful hand craftwomanship! One of my most favorite items are the grooviest little shoes ever - the Graffiti Sneakers!

ADORABLE, right??!! I recently gave a pair of these hand painted sneakers to a little girl for her 4th birthday and they were her favorite birthday gift!

The cuteness doesn't stop there. I mean look at this darling birthday party tutu outfit!! Talk about belle of the ball - love it!

And, I simply adore the Little Bitty Clippy's like these which are too perfect for Halloween coming up!

Lehla Shop is being featured in so many places right now, like The Daily Guncle, so I'm thrilled to have been able to snag Lisa to answer some questions! I think you'll see how easy it was to connect with Lisa. She is just so charming and fun! I hope you'll stop by Lehla Shop to find a sweet & unique gift for someone special in your life!

5 Questions with Lisa Hill from Lehla Shop

Uptown Girl: What was the inspiration for starting Lehla Shop?
Lisa Hill: My inspiration was my daughter! It's always about my daughter! I had purchased her a tutu before she was born after seeing it on the cover of BabyTalk (which I still have!). After moving to Louisiana and leaving my full-time job, I realized I had a lot of time on my hands. I hadn't realized how popular tutus were so, one day I decided I was going to make a tutu similar to the one I had purchased. After trial and error, I eventually found what worked best for me! In 2009, I founded Lehla Shop (Lehla stands for Lisa Elaine Hill Louisiana), a custom shop full of handmade goodies and couture tutus that quickly blossomed into a successful business When I first started on the well known, all things hand-made site, Etsy, I hadn't expected to expand what Lehla Shop is today.

UG: Do you have a favorite item to design?
LH: Well I still have a love for my tutus, but I would have to say my ABSOLUTE new fave is my graffiti sneaker! It allows me to return to my world of creative art and really express myself! My graffiti sneakers are completely customized to each girl and/or boy that I make them for! I had forgotten how much I loved to design!

UG: How do you find balance between “real life” and being a super MOMpreneur?
LH: Who told you I found balance...'cause they were so fibbing! lol! It's hard for me to admit I am overwhelmed! I work part-time at a local church as a childcare provider, so about 18 hrs a week are spent there. I have begun teaching ZumbAtomic classes so I will be dedicating about 4 hours a week to that. The rest is juggled between Lehla Shop and my daughter! Lately I have been stressing that I don't spend enough time with my daughter and realized that I need to treasure these years. So, it has been extremely hard finding balance for me! When they announce that there will be an extra 6 hours in the day, I will be jumping for joy! lol!

UG: What advice would you give to other female entrepreneurs just starting out?
LH: If you read question #3 I am probably not the best candidate to give anyone advice! lol! What I can say is that it takes TIME! Lots of time...and patience. I have been blessed to have had a lot of good opportunities come my way, i.e. the 30th Annual News & Doc Emmy Award swag bags, a Hollywood celeb gifting and my new connection with Tori Spelling. Lehla Shop made it's mark in the world when I designed custom shirts for Liam's 3r birthday party. They were featured on her reality show, Tori & Dean, Home Sweet Hollywood on Oxygen where I also provided tutu's for Tori's party guests as well. In addition, Lehla Shop was one of the preferred boutique gifts at a recent baby shower hosted by Tori Spelling in August for Bill Horn and Scout Masterson, also known as "The Guncles". Having an opportunity to gift for Tori Spelling is a dream come true. I respect everything about her and she is such an inspiration to me...seeing her accomplish so much makes me work 10 x's harder! Hard work DOES make dreams come true...

UG: What is up & coming for Lisa Hill and Lehla Shop??
LH: Ooh, let's see...I was just contacted by LaunchHER, a company that gives a boost to {women owned} brands, and was chosen to be one of their freshly launched companies! The launch will bring more positive attention to my company and what Lehla Shop has to offer! Look for me at For me personally, when I am not busy with yards of tulle or painting my next graffiti sneaker, you can catch me making my way in the blogging world sharing things on the Lehla Shop blog and my life confessions on the MOMpreneur Diaries. I am also a contributing writer to the well-known, celeb loving blog Sprinkles, part of cupcakeMAG. And if that's not enough, I am currently having my first children's book edited. I am hoping my good fortune will allow me to find a publisher and someday see it on bookstore shelves! I think I have enough on my plate for now...we'll just have to see what the future brings!

10 Fun & Fab Facts about Lisa Hill

1. I used to be a completive ice skater. my dad had high hopes of me going to the Olympics, until I quit.

2. I am addicted to magazines! my husband once counted them and I had 11 magazine subscriptions!

3. My favorite color is black...then gray...

4. I own 95 pairs of shoes (that i could visibly count in my closet)! 14 of which were flip flops!

5. My daughter owns 18 pairs of shoes..she's 3! (do you see a pattern here?)

6. I dream of living in San has the perfect temperature year round...never hot, never cold. Jealous that my sister lives there!

7. I have a grand love for peanut butter. I eat it by the spoonful, shhhh!

8. I met my current husband through my ex-husband...before he was my ex! They were on the same Fire Department!

9. It once took me 3 hours to shop for 1 the same store. I have a friend who fears the words "purse shopping" from me!

10. I am addicted to the Rachel Zoe project. seriously, I think she is my girl crush! When I grow up, i wish to be trendy and fashionable and talented enough to dress celebrities!

i'm an entrepreneur. now what?

One great part of my journey as a MOMpreneur is meeting other awesomely incredible and amazing MOMpreneurs! Now I've never been good at "networking”. Frankly that word alone makes me shudder and want to run away and hide. I hear the word "networking" and it seems so cold, so rehearsed, and so like 1985. Now I do understand the importance of the act. The more people you meet and present your "elevator pitch" to (Ugh, elevator pitch! Another one of those blah terms in the world of entrepreneurialism.) , the more likely your business will thrive and grow and blah blah blah. If you have your own business then this is not by any means breaking news. If you have your own business, and this comes easy to you, then you get two snaps up! (In a Z formation of course!). But, if you're like me, if this whole networking, elevator pitch schtuff seems way over your head and like the scariest thing ever, then what are you left to do??

There is the obvious, and kind of a good idea, PRACTICE! You know how you stand in front of your mirror with your brush and give your big Oscar acceptance speech? And don't lie, we all have done this at one point! Well, this is the same idea except instead of tearfully thanking your spouse, children, parents, cast, crew, the academy and your new best friend and co-star Jennifer Aniston, give your pitch. Do this often. Pretend you're a guest on Oprah and she's featuring YOU as HER favorite thing. Again, don't lie, we all have done our very own Oprah interview in our heads. Then once you feel like Oprah is totally going to call you to invite you on the show, grab the person you trust the most and practice on them. Before you know it you'll be ready and set on your way grabbing people at Target to give them your pitch. Kind of like those Mary Kay ladies who stop you while your shopping to tell you how beautiful you are and would you like to buy some make-up. NO, do not do this. That's annoying. BUT do note good opportunities and give it a swing. You never know who you might be talking to.

Now I know I may still have not sold some of you. It's still very frightening and uncomfortable. I'll be honest with you... I feel the same way! I may talk the talk but my walk ain't got much swagger. So... where does that leave us? Luckily there are so many cool options now with social media being so huge. Facebook and Twitter are my top faves! They are not replacements for old school, face-to-face networking (sorry it just must be done!) but they are marvelous accompaniments.

Still feeling awkward? Well, remember way at the beginning of my teachings here (bah – I know, I know) I spoke about MOMpreneurs? I have had the most fun networking with other MOMpreneurs! Yes, I said I had fun networking! The community of MOMpreneurs is vast and full of fantastic talent. But, it’s not only moms, women running businesses in general is so HOT right now! How fantabulous is that?! Maybe I need to invent a new word that encompasses all women entrepreneurs. GALpreneurs? Ok, I’ll keep working on that. In the meantime, all you fellow “networking” haters, go out there and get involved in the MOMpreneur community! The energy, love and support is crazy good. I feel so blessed to be a MOMpreneur and to know so many others. As women we must support other women owned businesses! I truly believe this is a huge key to the great, big, heavy door of success. It’s not only important but it’s fun! As serious as you should take your business, you should also find joy in it every day. I find so much joy in networking with other women entrepreneurs. They help to feed my drive. They make me want to succeed. They hold me up and they probably don’t even know it. So much opportunity is out there but you cannot let fear of anything hold you back.

Not quite sure how or where to venture out and establish some MOMpreneur relationships? Here is where I will come in! Yes, right here on my blog you will find two great sections of information. In the MOMpreneur Love section there will be links available to sites I love and love to support! In the My Favorite Things sections I will feature women run businesses in detail including photos of products and interviews with the women themselves! There are also some awesome sites out there like Market Mommies, LaunchHER and Savor the Success that are specifically geared towards women entrepreneurs and they all offer something a little different. I am so looking forward to all I plan on bringing to the table here. I hope to meet many more amazing women entrepreneurs and maybe together we can kick networking’s bootie and conquer the world.
Peace & Love.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

and the winner is...

But, first let me say a big heartfelt thank you to all who love and support me & all that is Uptown Girl Designs! It means the world to me!! I hope to have many, many more giveaways too so pass the love around! I'm already planning my next giveaway too because I just LOVE my fans so, so, so much!!

The winner was chosen using based on how many people left comments, not based on how many comments we actually made because some left more than one. I figured that was the most fair way to handle that. I will email the winner with the gift certificate code to be used at checkout!

So... without further ado... the winner of a $50.00 gift certificate to Uptown Girl Designs is... ANNA!!

Congrats to you!!

Peace & Love.

Monday, September 13, 2010

fweaky, fweaky

I'm not even sure how I'm functioning right now, but alas, here I am (early!) on a Monday morning stabbing away at the computer keys. It was a rough night because my petunia, Gabby, could not sleep because, as she said, "my nobe id stubby". Translation: my nose is stuffy. So, that meant I was awake with her, even though my nobe was completely unstubby, trying to convince her to let me use the "fweaky, fweaky". You know... the nose aspirator... that crazy blue bulbous, rubber squeezy, boogy snatcher thing... the fweaky fweaky. No, I'm not losing my beans, that's what it is. At least how I learned what it was from my cute & sweet Cuban grandmother who called it just that - fweaky fweaky. Ok, I'm sure it definitely had something to do with the fact that her limited English made it kind of difficult for her to say "aspirator", so why not call it like it sounds?? FWEAKY FWEAKY FWEAKY FWEAKY.

So, at 2 a.m. I'm in the dark, fweaky fweaky in one hand, tissues in the other, and wishing the actual fweaky fweaky had as much appeal as it's funny little nickname. In the end, the saline and fweaky fweaky went in the nose, the boogs surrendered out of the nose, and Gabby finally fell back asleep... 2 hours later...

Even with the challenges of the fweaky fweaky (and by challenges I mean pinning down your kid and getting it in there or the harder if the two, begging) it is totally worth it! So, don't be afraid, embrace and befriend the fweaky fweaky, and shove it on up your kids noses... they may never thank you but at least they'll be a little less snotty and you'll get a little more sleepy.

Miss you Nani!

Peace & Love.

Friday, September 10, 2010

giveaway: $50.00 gift certificate

I'm SO excited to announce the very first giveaway on my blog! It's a $50.00 gift certificate good towards any purchase at Uptown Girl Designs!! WHY?? Because I love you all and because I promised a giveaway once Uptown Girl Designs had 350 Facebook fans! Thank you so, so very much for all the love & support! AND, how perfect right before the holidays too?! There are many unique & stylish designs available for holiday cards or you can even choose to have a custom design!! You're not limited to holidays cards though because as you know we love to help you celebrate for any event or occasion.
Here's what you need to do to be eligible to win:

1. Be a fan ("Like") on the Uptown Girl Design Facebook page,

2. Leave a comment on the blog below saying what you'd like to use the gift certificate towards if you win!

You have until Wednesday, September 15, 2010 to enter!! The winner will be contacted via email on 9/16/10. Best wishes!

Peace & Love.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

it's about time

Greetings & salutations! Welcome to the first official blog post of Uptown Girl Designs!! This is not my first attempt at being an uber cool blogger though. Or my second for that matter. (um, or my third if you really need to know!) I've been down this road before - excited & ready to spew out bubbles of my wisdom and wit for all the world to read. I would post daily (er, weekly!) easily relatable ramblings filled with that girl-next-door charm. Yep, I would be the next "IT" blogger & stir up the blogosphere with all I dared to share with my readers.

Then..... do I even need to say it? Seriously?? We all know what happened. You know, that thing we always blame for "settling in". Let's all say it together why don't we. REALITY! Or as some of you may have been thinking, her half-sister's 2nd cousin twice removed, TIME! Whatever your poison, reality or time, or a little cocktail of the two, these things always seem to turn you back into a pumpkin way before midnight. Or something like that.

The thing is, or the reality is, that there are so, so many blogs out there. So, so many that are already charming and witty and have that IT factor. How do you make yourself stand out even the teeniest bit? But more importantly, where do you fine the TIME to do it all?? I am slowly (& impatiently!!) learning that none of that actually really matters. Can you believe it? What matters is that you keep on... keeping on. Never stop, don't quit, and all that jazz. I may not be the next overnight IT sensation but this blog around I am going to try a little harder!

Peace & Love