Dreamers + Doers | Lillian Plum

Last month, we announced the beginning of our Dreamer + Doers project. Amanda has been connecting with a variety of small business owners over the last few weeks, and we're thrilled to publish our first interview today!

First up, our dear friend, Katie, and her sweet business Lillian Plum

Tell us a bit about Lillian Plum

Lillian Plum is my online shop that sells handcrafted wares - totes, pillows, pouches - that have been repurposed from vintage or reclaimed fabrics. In their former lives, my fabrics were curtains, swatches from upholstery books, even tuxedo wedding shirts! When grandmothers move into their retirement homes, their 30 year old fabric collection usually finds its way to my craft room. 

How long had you been dreaming about Lillian Plum? What made you finally go for it?

I had been dreaming about it for a year and a half before I launched. I had friends around me who started pursuing their own artistic dreams and I thought, "Why can't that be me, too?" So, I spent a year making items to list and launched two years ago. 

Where do you get your inspiration?

I love sewing patterns from the 40's and 50's, vintage ribbons, that sort of thing. I was definitely born in the wrong decade. 1938 feels about more my style. 

What would you do with Lillian Plum if you knew you couldn't fail?

I'd love to expand to stationary and paper goods - invitations, stickers, personalized stationary. Right now, it just doesn't seem congruent with what I'm already doing. 

What is your favorite part about running Lillian Plum? You least favorite part?

I love finding old textiles and giving them life. I recently took some of my husband's old button-down dress shirts and turned the cuffs into card holders. They're the perfect size for business cards, Instax pictures, credit cards. On the flip side, I hate just about everything that has to do with money. Thankfully, my husband helps with that!

What's been the best business advice you've received?

Know your customer. I know what I like, but I've learned that I'm not making this product for myself, I'm making it for them. So, I always take the time to learn what exactly they want.   

Thank you for being our very first feature, Katie!

Head over to Katie's shop to see her amazing creations! 


Know someone running their own small business? We'd love to feature them! Tell us in the comments below (or send us an email!)