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Meet Karen Hill

Today we’d like to introduce you to Karen Hill.

Hi Karen, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start maybe you can share some of your backstory with our readers?
I’ve always enjoyed crafting and creating, but I started sewing children’s clothes when my daughter was born over six years ago. I quickly found that I had more ideas than I could ever sew up for one little girl to wear, so I started making for others. I had three kids in less than two years and discovered that working during nap times was a welcome creative outlet and gave me some balance.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It’s always a struggle balancing work with family time. At the outset, I promised myself I was only doing this on the side, for fun, and that I wouldn’t let it take the lead over family. I’ve definitely discovered that the more I make, the more inquiries I get, and it’s very hard to say no to projects! Especially in the past two years with virtual schooling and other conflicts, I’ve had to learn to be okay with turning down customs or creating less for my line. When life settles down, I can always make more again!

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
I make children’s clothing for Olive + Peony. About half of my work consists of line items, and the other half are custom orders. I love making dresses and outfits for special occasions, like birthdays, holidays, and family portraits! I enjoy pairing fun fabric prints and designs with more classic silhouettes.

We’re always looking for the lessons that can be learned in any situation, including tragic ones like the Covid-19 crisis. Are there any lessons you’ve learned that you can share?
When Covid first hit, I abandoned all profitable sewing projects for my shop and focused completely on making fabric masks for the community (this was when supplies were at a premium and masks weren’t yet readily available in stores). I made them all available at no charge and accepted donations that went to KirkCare. People were so appreciative and it felt great to do something productive at a time when we all felt so helpless. Since then, work has definitely taken a backseat to family time, and I’ve learned that it’s ok to step back now and then!

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Karen Hill, Lisa Park

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