We caught up with our busy founder, Adrian, on her birthday (which happens to be National Make A Difference Day!) to chat about Motherhood, becoming an entrepreneur & inspiration.
Adrian’s full-hearted approach to business & motherhood is what fuels Cat & Dogma. Her passion for prosperity for the planet & humankind is as inspiring as it is soulful.
Q: Why did you start Cat & Dogma?
A: After owning a conventional cotton children’s brand prior to Cat & Dogma I learned so much about the reality of the product and its lasting and damaging effects on the environment. We all seem to think cotton is a natural fiber but it is one of the most toxic. Conventional cotton represents less than 3 percent of the world’s agriculture, yet accounts for 25 percent of the most harmful insecticides and 10 percent of the most toxic pesticides used in agriculture. Fashion, next to Big Oil is the second leading polluter in the world. No to mention these factories have no social standards in place for their workers. It’s hard to support industries like this and even harder to be involved in it. I couldn’t sleep at night. I started Cat & Dogma to do something good, something that helped the planet and people thrive…to be one small step toward a better future for our children.
Q: Where do you find inspiration for your patterns?
A: Inspiration comes from all over at the most random of moments. I would say my biggest inspiration is travel but animals definitely have a presence in our print stories. Mainly dogs! We are a dog family. In fact, my chihuahua goes everywhere I go. She even has her own bed in our fulfillment space.
Q: Cat & Dogma is ethically made + certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard. Why are upholding these standards so important?
A: Global wellness means everything to me. It’s my job as an American woman with privileges and certain advantages to empower other women with the work I do. This means working with a supply chain the offers advancement for women, programs for children, and a living wage for their workers. Workers also must be allowed to choose employment freely. Our suppliers must all be certified by GOTS. I will not compromise these values for profit. There is no reason everyone shouldn’t thrive in a healthy global community. The fashion industry has a long way to go, but the ethical movement has traction and is gaining momentum by the day. I believe in it, and so do our customers. Our customers want authenticity and transparency, so we plan to give it to them.
Q: Being a Mother + an entrepreneur you have got your hands full. What are a few wellness practices that you can’t live without?
A: Being a working mompreneur is difficult but absolutely worth it. I have to find balance. I try to implement daily practices to keep myself mentally healthy. I cant mom or work if I’m a mess. I start with coffee and daily exercise even it’s only 20 minutes. I plug in a couple of yoga classes per week and meditation practice. Again even if its only 5 minutes its the thing the saves me. I spend as much time as I can with my son. If work things have to wait, I let them wait. I really love being a mom, it is 100% who I am.
Q: A piece of advice for new Mamas?
A: Take care of YOU! You can’t do anything well if you don’t make time for yourself and do the things you enjoy. Being a new mom is one of life’s biggest challenges. Go for walks outside, engage in your community (find your tribe), and do things that make you happy and don’t apologize. Your babies are relying on you to be the best version of yourself.
Q: A piece of advice for new entrepreneurs?
A: Entrepreneurs are risk-takers but also somewhat of control freaks. I am finding that in this ongoing journey that I cannot possibly do everything. Delegate, delegate delegate! I think after 3 years we have a rock-star team that continues to grow. Trust people even though you may occasionally get burned. And find a good mentor; someone who has been there and done that. Don’t get discouraged and don’t ever give up. Entrepreneurs are dreamers. Dream big!