I am all about finding everyday-wear pieces that add beauty to a simple outfit. My closet would be boring without a statement item or two. As a mother, getting ready in the morning needs to be 1-2-3! Consequently, I was hooked when I found these--instant flash without additional time. Made specifically for convertible bras, these straps by BRA-sériē would be a great addition to the ever-popular capsule wardrobe! No need to give up the comfort of your own bra; these beauties hook on the same way the store-bought straps do; and you simply cannot find this kind of quality at your local lingerie store. Each strap is made up of two parts: the supportive elastic, and the decorative fabric; the pairing ensuring that the straps will not stretch out over time.
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Deck & Oar: What inspired you to start BRA-sériē?
Tammi Relyea: I was inspired on several levels to start my own apparel company, beginning with BRA-sériē. I’ve always been interested in fashion, particularly ways to use fashion for personal expression, creativity and empowerment. And more recently I’ve wanted to challenge myself beyond being a wife and mom. Let’s just say I was anxious to step out of my comfort zone.
Shortly after moving to Northern California in 2014, I had a vision of creating a unique fashion platform that would not only reinvent the bra strap, but also embody values I’m passionate about- promoting a positive self-image and empowering women.
I always felt that while other aspects of lingerie and fashion have made huge evolutionary leaps decade after decade, very little has changed with bra straps. Having talked with hundreds of women of all ages about this, I know there’s a high demand for fun, fashionable alternatives to showing our unattractive standard bra straps. So BRA-sériē’s mission is to reimagine and reinvent the bra strap into a chic, stylish and personal fashion accessory. We've created inter-changeable straps from dainty to daring – it’s about time for us to step up our bra game!
Deck & Oar: As a mother, what do you find to be challenging during this stage of your life, and how has the business helped?
Tammi: As an entrepreneur and mother, my biggest challenge is not being too hard on myself, and expecting every aspect of my life to run smoothly. For example, I’ve had to accept there is no such thing as the "perfect" work & family life balance. As mothers, our days often start out as routine but quickly become unpredictable and chaotic. Add the demands of starting your own business, and it’s impossible for things to go smoothly, no matter how organized you are or how many hours of sleep you give up.
Running my own business has helped me learn to be more flexible, more patient, more forgiving, and more proactive in asking for help and advice. We are so fortunate to live in this communication and information age, where you can connect instantly with friends and colleagues, or join an on-line community for “momrepreneurs" and exchange advice, share frustrations, or just laugh! It’s become one of my goals to meet someone new for lunch or coffee at least once every other week — for women entrepreneurs, it’s important that we learn from each other and support one another.
Deck & Oar: You live in California, and value "American Made." Tell us a bit about the process for BRA-sériē?
Tammi: From the beginning, it was important for me to produce BRA-sériē in the USA. I’m establishing a brand, and in order for my brand to connect with people in a meaningful and lasting way, it needs to stand for a set of core values. To be honest, it hasn’t been easy, and in fact I was surprised how many people discouraged me from taking the American-made approach. Manufacturing in the USA is more expensive, and unfortunately it can feel like a competitive disadvantage with so many fashion items being made overseas and sacrificing quality for lower prices. I want to have control over the quality of my products, I want to work with women who I’ve personally met and can develop a trustworthy relationship with, and I want to do my part to support our economic structure. BRA-sériē is made in Northern California utilizing a manufacturing studio owned, and managed, by women.
Sponsored by BRA-série. All thoughts and feelings about this product are my own.