Q&A With Sabrina and Becky from Bellies in Bloom
A blog post idea I have had recently is to do brief interviews with women who own local businesses here in Victoria that offer services to women during the childbearing years. I am not only curious to learn what makes them unique and what makes them passionate about working with moms and mamas-to-be, but also what we all have in common. I know for sure I am far more likely to use a product, visit a store or refer friends and family to a business if I feel there is a sense of connection between my personal values and those of a company or its creator.
By giving insight into who they are and what motivates them to do what they do, I hope to enhance my clients’ and readers’ knowledge of supportive resources that are for women, by women and because of women too!
I also want to feature amazing, local women (who often are also mothers themselves) that are inspirational in their drive to be the best at both business and their home lives. As a business owner myself, I am always inspired by women in leadership and feel there is always something I can learn from other women in the business world; maybe you can too! They deserve to be celebrated and I want to be a part of their cheer squad! I want to see what kinds of change can happen when we stop reviewing or critiquing and just start highlighting and celebrating. If you are a woman and thinking of starting or getting involved in business, I hope you can find some encouragement here too. My goal is to make this an ongoing category throughout the year, so please keep visiting the blog to check back and see who has been introduced.
I started with Sabrina Wurban, one half of the amazing duo of Sabrina and Becki who co-own Bellies in Bloom. Bellies has been one of Victoria’s only dedicated maternity clothing shops for years. Sabrina and Becki assumed ownership last year and have completely reinvented pregnancy and post-partum style. Together they have brought such a fun, youthful energy to their space. They’ve creatively blended a fierce sense of fashion, compassion and eco-consciousness. Recognizing that traditional pregnancy styles are often boring, frumpy or outdated; they have worked hard at curating a clothing selection that is comfortable, functional, adorable and often locally sourced. Being a new mom herself, Sabrina knows what real women would want to wear. Cute shirts, shorts and casual dresses that are made of soft, sustainable fabrics (think bamboo and modal) that can take you from breastfeeds to brunch or afternoon walks. Pajamas and lounge wear that make you feel cozy and can stand up to spit up! Plus; nursing bras with coordinated undies in ALL sizes that make new mamas feel downright sexy. Read on to find out more about Sabrina, Becki and their adventures in business!
CD: Can you tell me a bit about yourself and your life; who you are, your work/life experience, interests and passions as well as personal and business values or philosophies?
SW: “Behind Bellies in Bloom are Becki and I; bffs since 1997. We met in junior high school when dippity-doo gel and tear away pants ruled the school. Who knew that one day our friendship and interest in fashion and community would bring us back together?! I had a successful career in the hair industry and Becki was managing an adorable maternity store that happened to be for sale. The rest of the story writes itself. We both believe in the power of making mothers feel good in their skin, through the perfect outfit or simply a bra that fits properly. We recognize our customers’ vulnerability, especially in early pregnancy and during the postpartum phase and don’t take their trust for granted.”
CD: When did you assume ownership of Bellies and what motivated you to step into this role?
SW: “We took over the business in September of 2017 and we’ve been learning ever since! When the stars aligned and our hopes were falling in to place, we went with the flow and ended up with a business! We don’t take ourselves too seriously and we are enjoying the hustle of being a small business.”
CD: For you ladies, what are some of the rewards of being a female entrepreneur in the sphere of maternity care?
SW: “Thanks to our business model, we are able to connect with our customers on a personal level and value the relationships we’ve made so far. Similarly to you, it’s been our goal to meet other female entrepreneurs so we can create a true community feeling. The biggest reward is having someone recommend us and it’s our pleasure to recommend others.”
CD: What are some of the challenges?
SW: “Real honesty alert; we are not business people. We didn’t go to school to be business owners and our eyes are WIDE open to how versatile we have to be now. We each take on several different roles and look at every situation as a learning experience.”
CD: What has been your most memorable learning experience so far?
SW: “It’s been one really big learning experience so far! We’ve completed a renovation, moved our entire inventory to a whole new system, and built a new website from scratch. We’re teaching each other social media (Instagram boomerangs will have us in stiches for days), and we have a LOT to learn!”
CD: What are your top three favorite products that you sell and why?
SW: “We tend to like simple, impactful designs and making functional products beautiful or at least more comfortable so our top three faves are:
- Belly Bandit pregnancy and postpartum support belts because you don’t know what you’re missing until you try one on. Support garments are the unsung heroes of pregnancy and post birth!
- Matraea body products and organic teas because they are a badass group of talented people making quality products that can ease common pregnancy and post birth discomforts. (*OMG! Crystal LOVES this product line and its creators so much!)
- Boob Design maternity and nursing clothing because they perfectly align with modern motherhood. Classic styles in sustainable fabrics ethically made in Europe and tried and tested by our customers over the past decade.”
CD: What advice do you have for other women who are or who want to be involved in business (management, ownership or otherwise), especially in the sphere of maternity care?
SW: “Are we even qualified to give advice?! We don’t pretend to know the answers. We accept each other’s limitations and seek experts who can help us find solutions to problems as they arise. It’s been important for us to trust our instincts and it’s working for us so far! When it comes to maternity care, number one is to honour our customers and balance that with honouring our business.”
Well said ladies; there are a number of great business wisdom nuggets here and I hope you find them as insightful as I do! A huge thank you to Sabrina and Becki for gifting me with their precious time and answering my questions. To explore more about the products and services that they offer, visit Bellies online or drop by in person at their store which is located at 104 – 4489 Viewmont Ave in Victoria.
Yours In Health,
Crystal Daigneault, BHSc., RMT