Monday Moment’s Inside: The LOVE Channel

Company/Owner Name: The LOVE Channel/Ty Austin Swint
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Owner Background Summary:
A lover of the arts, I attended Performing Arts School during high school and also trained in classical piano for 2 years. I put my love for the performing arts on the back burner and recently retired from another form of arts, the healing arts where I practiced as a massage therapist specializing in spa modalities and Swedish massage for 14 years. “I think you always go back to what you LOVE. I have always been a fan of music, fashion and food for as long as I can remember. I once told my granny that she was not a real grandma because she did not bake cookies like my grandma, my dad’s mother. I remember our time in the kitchen together like it was yesterday. 🙂 And coming from a big family of 3 aunts and 8 uncles, food and love and eating at the table was just the norm growing up. And many of those gatherings included music. I remember a lot of Chaka Khan, LOTS of Marvin Gaye, Rolls Royce and Heatwave being played at my granny’s. At grandma’s it was the Commodores and gospel music. Jesus Is Love by the Commodores is one of my favorite songs to this day. And mom, my precious bohemian would play a lot Air Supply, Hall and Oates, Joni Mitchell and easy listening music. My fashion sense, I think I got from my entire family. I came up watching my mom, dad, aunts and uncles wear afros and sport bell bottoms or hip huggers, cute bohemian style dresses or simple dresses with simple, cool jewelry that just says Love Child and 70’s to me. They tell me they grew up poor, but you sure can’t tell looking at old photos. But that is because my granny knew how to cut patterns from paper bags and she would sew dresses and slips for the girls and for her boys, they only had a few pieces, but my granny would wash them out by hand in the early days and starched them so well, my uncle’s pants would stand on their own. LOL 🙂 They also did a lot of thrift store and Goodwill shopping which equaled poor back in the day, today it is hip to thrift store shop and see what treasures can be found. I LOOOVE to thrift store shop. I seek them out. One of my favorite places to do second hand shopping is at Hidden Treasures in Topanga, California. 
 
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How did you start your company? 
My friends often teased me about taking photos of EVERYTHING. I joke back sharing that it is in my DNA. My granny does the same thing. And one friend shared that she enjoyed my writing posts on Facebook and suggested that I start a blog. That was about a year ago and for some reason I decided 2014 was the year to get started. I was not quiet sure what type of blog I wanted, however I knew for sure it had to somehow be about LOVE. I decided to go in the route of the many things I enjoy such as music, fashion, food and travel, many of things I feel universally brings us together. 
 
What is your company about?
It is a fashion and lifestyle blog. I hope it encourages people to get the best out of life by taking time to do the things they enjoy and with the people they love or even alone. I do a lot of my travels alone and have met some fantastic people along the way. 🙂
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What are the best and worst things about being a business owner? 
Currently I am experiencing the best, Praise God. 🙂 I love waking up without an alarm clock and not having to rush to enjoy my breakfast. I can take my time preparing whole foods and when I eat I can take the time to actually taste every bite. Another good thing is there is plenty going on and I love the chance to get all dressed up and go out to events to be around people and see the exciting life of others. I live for that kind of stuff, seeing others do well and loving what they do. And then I get to talk about it, blog about it and perhaps it will inspire someone else. The worst part. There really isn’t a worst part. But I will share there are a lot of terms and conditions to read. It is not bad, it is just tedious, it takes time.
 
What are the things you like most about your career?
Ahhhh, career. 🙂 I like that word. That’s one of the things that I like about it. You can choose to make blogging a career or not. And it is fun. I may be speaking too soon, but I can not imagine it not being fun since it entails all of the things I love to do. And like anything in life, you get out of it what you put into it. I am a fan of choices. I love having choices verses only being able to do things one set way. There are some guidelines I am learning, however there is no one set way to do things. That fits my Leo personality very well. 🙂 And most importantly I get to choose when to work and that allows me to keep my priorities in check. For me that means always having time for my family and being able to put God, myself and family first. 
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What are some of your top sources of inspiration? 
God’s word, my loving family, Michael Jackson and his music, music period, fashion and travel. And seeing people happy. 🙂 I love to see people living and loving life. Life is my inspiration. 
 
What is a typical day like?
Wake up, no alarm, brush teeth and wash face, prepare and eat breakfast while watching Frasier, shower, put on fresh PJ’s. Review and add to my To Do List, then log on and see what is going on and what inspires me, blog and social network. Most of the events I go to happen at night so if there’s an event to attend, I typically start to get ready 2 hours in advance so I can take my time and not get frustrated if I change my mind once or twice about an outfit (lol:), plus I like to give myself plenty of time to get to where I am going. This allows me time to park and time to walk to the venue if needed. Most of the time complimentary valet parking is available so I take advantage of that since I am usually in heels. 
 
What are some of your greatest accomplishments?
Hmmm, good question. I just started The LOVE Channel blog in March and I would say getting started is probably my greatest accomplishment so far. I put it off for an entire year, so taking the steps to actually do it and set a schedule for myself, that’s a pretty good accomplishment. 
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What’s your philosophy of life? 
Life MORE, Give MORE and LOVE MORE
Any additional info/comments:
Thank you for the opportunity to be showcased on NittyGritty and for the opportunity to carry on and on about myself and The LOVE Channel. LIVE More, GIVE More, LOVE More 🙂
Check out the website at: http://thelovechannelblog.tumblr.com
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The Baby Box Co.

A New Mom’s Dream!

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Life as you know it has officially changed. Now what? It has all of a sudden occurred that you do not bear the slightest hint what to do, let alone what to purchase. Or maybe this life changing event is not happening to you personally; rather it is your dearest friend. Either way, the breathtaking joy of introducing a child into this world can be very overwhelming and stressful!

Does this sound familiar? It appears more often than we think and is the foundation for creating a product that I call “A new mom’s dream.” Michelle Vick, a blissful new mom and Jennifer Clary, a cheerful new aunt came together to transform the way we feel about that first day leaving the hospital with our little one.

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Imagine being given precisely what you need for your child. No pressure to research on your own, no feelings of anxiety about any products being unsafe and no worries about forgetting anything extremely critical. Well, today that dream has become a reality! The Baby Box Co.

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The Baby Box Co. is inspired by the 75 year old tradition in Finland. The state provides expectant mothers a box of essentials that are known as a “starter kit” for the mom. Research has shown that once the boxes were introduced in Finland, infant mortality rates plummeted, and it is now considered one of the very best countries in the world to be a mother.The Baby Box Co. has taken the concept of the “starter kit” box and brought it to the United States in a unique and exciting way!

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The Baby Box Co. has a variety of boxes offering different products based on your needs, from the hot must-have items in the Basic Box to the all-natural goodies in the Nature Box. Rest assured that each box has been thoroughly researched to provide new moms with the best quality products available. All models begin with the Bed Box, which is fashioned after the Finnish original. This custom-designed box is lined with a waterproof mattress, enabling it to be used as a safe place for the baby to sleep at night, or simply as a comfortable spot for baby to relax when Mom is busy.

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I got a chance to sit down with the owners to get a more in-depth look into this company.

How did you start your company? 

BB: We’ve been best friends since we were 11 and wanted to embark on a joint venture to benefit new parents.

What is your company about?

BB: The Baby Box Co. is about providing high quality infant goods to new parents at competitive prices. Our “claim to fame” is that we are the only manufacturer of traditional Finnish baby boxes outside of Finland. We include top quality baby goods in our Baby Boxes and ship them off to customers all over the world! In doing so, we provide a comprehensive “starter kit” for new moms while giving back to less fortunate parents via our partnership with Children International.

What is a typical day like?

BB: It varies from day to day, but typically involves the review of brands for inclusion in our online store, product procurement and testing, blogging, interacting with parents, answering customer questions, and preparing orders for shipment. Michelle also is a wonderful, tremendously hands on mother and Jennifer works for her other businesses and plays Dr. Doolittle to her herd of pets.

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In addition to providing remarkable products for moms, The Baby Box Co. is equally passionate about helping provide quality care for infants regardless of socioeconomic status. To show their dedication to this cause, they donate a portion of their proceeds to Children International. They also offer a 1-for-1 program whereby the company donates a box to a mom in need for every box sold.

To learn more about this incredible company, check out the website at: www.babyboxco.com

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Monday Moment’s Inside: Nugz Jewelry

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Nugz Jewelry offers a collection as unique as their customer. They encourage everyone to express themselves through jewelry and get inspired by color, diversity, travel, and design. From gemstone leather wrap bracelets, to jewel-encrusted bracelets & rings, Nugz Jewelry offers selections perfect for any occasion. Let’s get a look at how the owners behind Nugz Jewelry built this amazing brand!

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Company/Owner Name:

Nugz Jewelry, Lindsey Auclair & Billy Simon

Owner Background Summary:

Billy spent the majority of his career playing professional baseball.  When injuries plagued him, he partnered with his father on a jewelry line.  They brought me in to help build the website and run operations and we found out that working together is a perfect fit.  We ran that bustling business in gorgeous Charleston, SC for four years before we were inspired to design our own collection and founded Nugz Jewelry

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How did you start your company?

We wanted to focus on a collection that we’re excited about.  We both have a passion for high quality leathers (who doesn’t?) and love the hands-on aspect of our Nugz Jewelry designs.

What is your company about?

Personalization through style.  The modern woman is complex, she’s not just one thing.  I might be in tattered denim and leather one day and a ball gown the next.  With our line you can be who you are in that moment.

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What are the best and worst things about being a business owner?

Best: So.many.things.  Seeing your designs come to life and then getting feedback from clients is amazing.  When someone appreciates what you do, it’s kind of awesome.  It’s also fantastic that we can run the business from anywhere so we were able to move to the Beach and stroll along the ocean every day.

Worst: Finding balance is beyond difficult.  Thirty-six hour days would be helpful.  A vacation every once in a while wouldn’t hurt either.

What are the things you like most about your career?

Being able to work together and put together pieces that we think are cool.

What are some of your top sources of inspiration?

Our clients are the ultimate inspiration. A chic city girl with a spot on sense of style, a sophisticated mom who loves fine garments; they can both express themselves beautifully with our designs.  Plus you can’t visit leather shops and not find a ton of inspiration in the textiles themselves.

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What is a typical day like?

Coffee, first and always.  That’s the only daily constant. We have our hands in everything so we could be in the workroom, checking on production, chatting with retailers, sketching ideas, flying to check out the new leathers, tweaking the website or laying out a catalog. It’s certainly never boring!

What are some of your greatest accomplishments?

Having the vision and drive to create two successful companies from the ground up.  We had to learn everything on the fly, and we made it work.

What’s your philosophy of life?

Give it all you’ve got.

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Any additional info/comments:

Lindsey is originally from Mountain View, California and went to school in Boston.  She met Billy there and they moved to Charleston, SC when she was done with school.  They moved to Vero Beach, Billy’s hometown, and began the Nugz Jewelry line.  She’s a little city, a little California and a lot bouncy.

Billy is the opposite of what you would expect in a jewelry designer.  He is 6’6”, an ex-professional baseball player and is sometimes sporting a crazy red beard.  While he’s definitely a guy’s guy, he has a surprising eye for design. Together, they’re a ball of contradictions but it works.

            To see the latest collection, check out www.nugzjewelry.com

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