Boss Lady is a series that shares personal insights from creative women in business. Today we chat with Kortni Jeane, the brains behind Kortni Jeane, a swimwear brand that offers one of a kind designs. Kortni discusses starting her company, which social media platforms offers the most customer interaction and more.
1. Tell us a little about yourself and your career.
I am 22 years old, I have just started on my second year of this swimmer business and I am absolutely loving it! I love unicorns, cotton candy, and tandem bike riding. Kortni Jeane got started as a hobby for a little extra cash to get me through college and has now turned into my life long career!
2. Have you always gravitated towards the world of design?
There was a million other things I wanted to be unrelated to design in anyway. I grew up sewing and creating but never thought I would make a living doing it until after I graduated from high school.
3. What prompted you to start producing your own products?
I was a guinea pig student for a swimsuit sewing class my senior year of high school. The first swimsuit I made for myself all my sisters and friends wanted so I decided I would make them all one, well word spread quickly and before you know it I was having strangers show up on my doorstep wanting a swimsuit!
4. Do you ever get emotionally attached to your creations?
Always haha. Being creative you make these things that are yours, so when others get rude or talk down on your company you take it personally. I always have to remind myself that everyone is different and I don’t have to please them all. As I create new designs I almost always want to keep them to myself because they are a little piece of who I am, selfish I know but at the same time I love sharing my creativity and life with others, that’s what makes it so magical!
5. Where do you see your line in 5 years? 10? What do you wish to expand?
Honestly I love what I am doing now and would be totally happy and satisfied if it continued the way it is! But of course like anyone else I love to see new customers find my little company daily and I’ve watched it grow tremendously just in the last couple of months and so I would just die to watch it to continue to grow and meet new eyes! Although we have in the past it would be a joy to start having our swimmers in stores so customers can see the quality of our product before they purchase! I mainly sell women’s swimsuits and have dipped into little girls and men’s slightly this season but would love to expand those lines and bring in little boys suits as well! Nothing like swimmers for the whole family, and hopefully matching none the less!
6. What is your most successful form of marketing? Do you have a personal favorite?
Most successful and only way I have ever marketed my business is through social media and I absolutely love it! Instagram is where we are most present and it’s just a joy to interact with customers there and to have them share their adventures in their swimmers with me! Every time I get tagged in a customer photo I squeal that someone is actually wearing something I created!
7. If you could have the respect of any Boss Lady, who would it be and why?
Naomi Davis, although probably not a common answer she is so inspiring. She manages not only a million creative and beautiful projects at once but always makes time for her darling kids and husband. I think it’s important to maintain a balance and though I’m sure she is not always perfect she looks flawless doing it all!
8. When you’re not working what do you enjoy doing most?
When I’m not working? I would love to know what that would feel like! I work from home so I feel like I never leave work and am constantly checking on my customers. But when I do manage to sneak in some time I am always with my sweet husband! As summer has started we love to swim or go to the lake and ride our tandem bike! Well I like to ride it and he humors me and joins in (because how fun would a tandem bike be by yourself??).
9. What inspires you and fuels your passion?
Oh gosh this is always the hardest question for me. I feel like I am inspired just by everyday life! Ideas are always flowing in (most of the time they don’t turn out so well) but I feel like I am always drawing out ideas that come into my head or running to my sewing machine to see if my idea looks as good physically as it does in my mind. I just love to see happy customers out and about. Nothing fuels me more then when I am out of state, out of my usual routine, and I spy someone in one of my swimsuits, it makes me want to run up and hug them (and I usually do)!
10. Do you have any advice for those looking to go chase a dream or goal?
I always say if you have a passion for something you have to at least give it a good whole heartily try because you never know what could come out of it! I never thought in my growing up that I would ever be a swimsuit designer with her own company and here I am starting my second year in my company and having the time of my life! It never hurts to try new things and be adventurous! Don’t be afraid to do what you love, it makes the 24:7 work hours a lot more worth it.