Donna Ladd was juggling a hectic work schedule while trying to find some solid resources for new mothers. After sifting through useless mommy message board banter, however, she decided to take matters into her own hands and create her own blog, Motherburg.
Ladd, a 42-year old magazine editor and mother of a 2-year old son, immediately took to the blogging voice, relishing the chance to be her own editor. But it wasn’t until she met Jessica Glorieux, also a new mother that Motherburg became what it is today: a fully-fledged business.
“Jessica wanted to start writing things for the blog and I have a history of knowing what’s going on editorially, so I didn’t want it to become cliché, ‘now you’re a mom and you’re blogging’,” said Ladd. “Now it’s gone from this organic thing to being a big part of the community.”
Ladd and Glorieux have tapped into an exploding market with Motherburg: new Williamsburg/Greenpoint moms. Glorieux’s parenting group, the “Brooklyn Bambinos,” has grown exponentially from 25 members to 203, consisting completely of mothers with babies born in the last three years. So far, the pair of entrepreneurs has helped build a client base through services such as maternal consulting (such as day care preparation and baby care instruction), pregnancy and postnatal styling, and nursery design. They also direct clients to local baby businesses in a coordinated effort to attract consumers.
“A lot of times when a woman gets pregnant you’re bombarded with all this new terminology and information and it can really be overwhelming,” said Glorieux. “We come in and help digest that information for you, get a sense of what you know and don’t know and really give people a timeline, because while you do have a lot of time before the baby is born, you also have a lot to get ready.”
Ladd deals with most of the styling services of the website. She had been an unofficial stylist for many years, helping pregnant and post-pregnancy women put together outfits as a favor. Now styling in an official capacity, an excited Ladd speaks about helping women deal with the emotional aspects of pregnancy like self-consciousness and weight gain.
“A lot of [styling], you really have to get into that woman’s personality,” said Ladd. “I don’t think you need something expensive to feel better. I don’t think that clothing is the solution when you have serious self-esteem problems, but I do think it helps to feel ‘put together’. Maybe it’s just something with a little color or something simple like a great pair of shoes.”
The two women divide the responsibilities of the site according to their work and parenting schedules. Ladd still works full-time, so she handles most of her duties as a stylist and blogger after work hours and on the weekend. Glorieux was recently laid off from a job in marketing and project management, and now has the time to run the website during the week as a full-time job and spend time with her 3-year old daughter and 17-month old son on the weekends. In a sense, for Glorieux, what could have been a devastating blow to her livelihood has instead become a new beginning.
“For me, [losing my job] is a huge opportunity to put all my effort in getting this out the door,” she said. “This is exciting because this is what I’d rather be doing anyway.”
For more information on Motherburg and the services they provide, visit www.motherburgnyc.com.
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