Article reblogged from Terre Haute Living http://bit.ly/2rSwBva — Chances are, readers have seen women wearing colorful, comfortable-looking leggings as they attend events and run errands around Terre Haute.
But, LuLaRoe isn’t just leggings. The clothing brand consists of modest, affordable skirts, dresses, leggings and more, designed to fit women of all ages and sizes. It is feminine, yet practical. It is clothing that looks put together and flattering on most figures, yet it holds a certain comfort most customers don’t see in other brands.
The now-national brand began with a mother of seven, DeAnne Stidham, and can be found in Terre Haute.
Kathy McCloy first heard about LuLaRoe leggings from a friend who hosted an online party with a consultant in Michigan. That’s how the brand operates. Fashion consultants host parties at their homes, and their friends’ homes, and online.
They are not permitted to have storefronts.
“I ordered leggings, a skirt, and a dress from that party and liked the clothes,” McCloy said. “I was looking for a change of pace, not to be on the road so much with work, I was intrigued and began researching LuLaRoe’s business plan and what the company stood for.”
Prior to her interest in LuLaRoe, McCloy, a mother of three young boys, had been a traveling photographer for 10 years. With a degree from the University of Tennessee and a bachelor’s of fine arts and art education, she has always felt a certain motivation as a professional.
“I have never worked in a profession that “required” me to have a college diploma, but as a photographer and a LuLaRoe fashion consultant, the concepts of design, color, proportion, and composition that I studied in four years of art school, I utilize daily,” she said.
McCloy’s marketing sense, photography skills and social media know-how have made her a successful consultant. When she began in 2016, the company determined what styles would be included in her initial order. After that, the consultant has control of their inventory.
“You can carry as many or as few styles as you want,” she said. “The unique thing about LuLaRoe is there are no catalogs … no way to order something you see someone else wearing. Prints on leggings and other clothes are very limited and consultants only have say over what styles they carry, not what fabrics, colors or prints. When I place an order for a certain style and size, it’s a complete surprise to me when the
boxes arrive and I open them up to see what limited edition prints, colors, and fabrics those styles arrive in.”
So why would this busy mother of three decide to take on this role? Simply because she likes helping people. She doesn’t shy away from a challenge, either; and she believes in the product.
“I was intrigued by the fact that this could be a part-time side gig, or it could be a career if I decided to step completely away from photography,” she stated. “There were just a couple of other consultants in Terre Haute when I started and I liked the idea of something new and fun and fresh to share with people.”
Although she admits it is difficult as a mother to try to do anything that doesn’t completely encompass her children, she has a strong home support system. Her parents live right next door and her husband is there any time she needs him.
“My house is not always clean, my laundry is not always caught up, and sometimes my kids eat cereal with sugar in it (gasp) … but I’m okay with that,” she said. “As long as my boys know they are loved by me and more importantly by their heavenly father, I figure I’m doing good enough!”
McCloy starts her day by getting the kids off to school and tries to cram in as much as possible while they are gone. What doesn’t get done is addressed after they go to bed at 8:30 p.m. She mixes in a few classes as a Power Pump instructor at the YMCA, which takes up a portion of her morning as well. Then, she meets her kids off the bus and spends the evening running them around town.
“[LuLaRoe] parties take me away a couple of times a week, but only for a few hours, not like when I used to be gone for days at a time when I traveled a lot for work,” she said.
Parties consist of loading all of her inventory into her van, which eventually became a trailer due to the sheer volume she eventually obtained, and taking it to various houses of friends who allow McCloy to take over their living room for the evening. They then invite their friends in to shop. McCloy provides gratis to those who help her host parties as a thank you giving up their home for the evening.
LuLaRoe has offered McCloy a great opportunity to make her own schedule and determine her own income. “It will work for a stay-at-home mom just looking to engage in some adult conversations and to supplement their spouse’s income, but it will also work as a full-time career if you’re willing to put the time and financial investment in to it. The one thing that people say that I always feel compelled to warn against is the “work part-time for full-time pay” myth. That is absolutely not true! You get out of this job what you put into it.” And she has certainly put enough into it – just check out her LuLaRoe Room. She has so much inventory based on her client base, that she ended up needing to rent out a room to stash it all.