The maker of well-tailored clothes for nursing moms and beyond was awarded the prestigious 2011 Eileen Fisher Business Grant for Entrepreneurs.
Seattle, WA-based HadleyStilwell has a vision. In February 2009, founder and designer Holli Harris set out to give breastfeeding mothers pulled-together, fashionable wardrobe pieces that allow for ease of breastfeeding or pumping. She’s also captured the imagination of women entrepreneurs, too.
I want to minimize the challenge of committing to breastfeeding, especially for mothers returning to work.
The company, named after Holli’s daughter, participated in Eileen Fisher’s 3rd annual Inspiring Women Event, which took place in May at the Eileen Fisher retail store in downtown Seattle. Attendees had the opportunity to connect with three Seattle area entrepreneurs as well as executives from Eileen Fisher, finding out how these local women have been able to turn their passions into successful, socially responsible businesses. In addition to HadleyStilwell, Mama K’s Play Clay, a maker of all-natural play dough with hints of aromatherapy to calm while encouraging creativity, and Ricicli, maker of handmade, one-of-a-kind upcycled clothing for babies and children, were also honored.
“Eileen Fisher is a business leader and role model for all women,” Holli says. “My business is all about merging functionality with style to support the most natural, and empowering, thing ever – breastfeeding. Working with Eileen Fisher inspires me to keep the focus on business values and giving back as we grow, just as Eileen Fisher has done.”
Holli is always poised to launch new pieces, such as a maxi dress and tunic-length top, to her versatile and popular Jet Set Collection. Yet even as she expands the HadleyStilwell collection, she always looks for ways to give back. She is a director on the board of Chindex International, the only private healthcare network of clinics and hospitals in China. She is also the chair of Washington CASH, a non-profit microfinance organization that provides business training, a supportive community and microloans that enable low-income individuals to achieve self-sufficiency through their own small business ideas. In addition, Holli donates 5% of every HadleyStilwell purchase to Best for Babes, an award-winning organization dedicated to helping moms beat the “Booby Traps” to breastfeeding – the cultural and institutional barriers that prevent moms from achieving their personal breastfeeding goals.
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