Motherhood is extremely rewarding and fulfilling, however, it is also a full-time job that can, at times, be trying and frustrating. Throughout the country, many mothers have chosen to either pursue their passions or diversify their revenue sources in starting their own businesses. Mompreneurs face a variety of challenges in juggling home life and running their businesses, but there are countless examples of remarkable women who have shown that it is possible to be successful at both. May we get inspired by these 7 Mom Entrepreneurs in Canada who have started small businesses by drawing inspiration from their unique interests and talents.
1. Riel Finishings, Manitoba
Rebecca Riel is a fiber artist who enjoys creating with various textures and patterns, specifically using hand-spun, hand-dyed, and recycled fibres. Her journey began while on maternity leave with her first son, when she decided to participate in weaving workshops. This developed into a passion, and now Riel has turned this passion into a business by working on commission for her large creations. She also has a collection of her smaller woven wall pieces that can be purchased at Maison Simons and sometimes on her Etsy page. Riel also teaches weaving in beginner workshops at the Winnipeg Art Gallery, and she aims to inspire more people to explore the world of tapestry-making.
Each bohemian-inspired tapestry Riel creates is made with recycled wool, meaning that they not only look remarkable, but they are also eco-friendly. She also offers custom made pieces in which clients can choose their preference of yarn. Riel shares, “When I started, the biggest loom I owned was homemade and 10 inches wide. Now my largest loom is 6 feet tall by 6 feet wide! Reflecting on the tangible growth I’ve experienced over the last four years is something I’m so proud of.” Riel’s artful tapestries have been featured in websites including The Art Spectrum and Made Here For You.
2. Mystic Waters Bath & Beauty Rituals, Nova Scotia
Elizabeth Lively owns the holistic skincare boutique called Mystic Waters Bath & Beauty Rituals, which offers products made with pure essential oils and vitamin-packed fruit and nut oils. Lively is an advocate for self-care, which is why she decided to share this interest with a wider clientele. Mystic Waters carries products including mineral bath salts, diffusers, serums, and cleansers. They also have six bath salt blends, each promoting therapeutic self-care. Their handmade products have been effectively described as relaxing and invigorating like the ocean. Lively shares, “I started Mystic Waters at the beginning of the pandemic to inspire at-home self-care rituals. I truly believe in the healing powers of aromatherapy and pure ingredients.”
3. Gigil Clothing, British Columbia
Corazon Manson works in the tech field as an App designer, but she also has a killer side hustle called Gigil Clothing. Their products consist of t-shirts, baby clothes, sweatshirts, hoodies, tote bags, and masks, all of which proudly feature several Pinoy-inspired designs that foster a sense of nostalgia in many Filipino families. For example, Gigil Clothing designs include adorable cartoon illustrations of cultural icons such as siopao, lumpia shanghai, halo-halo, and their own version of Jollibee, a well-loved fast food chain in the Philippines.
Manson tells us, “When I became a mom, I wanted to give my son the same experience I had growing up and took it upon myself to also create something not only for us to represent, but for other parents in my generation [who] want to teach and pass on our Filipino customs to their kids, as well as share our culture with the community.” Gigil Clothing was featured in the Philippine Reporter and became a participating vendor in the 2020 Magkasama Virtual Christmas Market.
4. Hudson Soap Co., Quebec
After a lengthy process of trial and error, alongside research and development, Allison Young launched Hudson Soap Company in 2018. Her Company offers a wide-range of handcrafted bath and body products like soap bars, clay masks, soaking salts, essential oil roller blends, body oils, lotion bars, lip butters, and even dog shampoo bars!
Young’s soap bars are picture-perfect, designed using different colors and textures, while also being 100% natural and made with high-quality, sustainably-sourced and plant-based ingredients. Everything that Hudson Soap produces is made with love in small batches, cruelty-free. Not only are their products safe and effective on your body, but you can also be certain that they are not harmful to the environment.
5. Pika Layers, Ontario
Marie, Atlee, and Sophie are the ingenious women behind Pika Layers. Their Company started out of a love for adventure and the outdoors, paired with their desire to make cozy clothes for their little ones. Pika Layers offers comfortable and breathable child and baby clothing. What makes their products special is the use of bamboo fabric in their clothing. Bamboo rayon has a soft, smooth texture, while also being lightweight to avoid any itchiness.
Some Pika Layers products are designed with UPF 50+ sun protection which makes their clothing perfect for wearing outdoors for spring and summer activities. Their product lines include pajamas, sleepers, shorts, shirts, blankets, and face masks, all available in a variety of colours, patterns, and designs. Parents can rest easy knowing that Pika Layers cares deeply for children’s well-being and comfort in their clothing.
6. Crochetty Rose, Alberta
Area Coelho wanted to make something handcrafted for her little one, so with her basic crochet knowledge and lots of excitement, she created an amigurumi dragon. Amigurumi refers to the Japanese art of crocheting stuffed toys. She tells us, “I felt so rewarded by my son’s joyful face playing with it that I decided to continue with this adventure, hoping that my products could reach other homes and make children smile in the same way mine did.” Aside from their popular stuffed toys, Crochetty Rose also features crochet beanies for adults and children, hair accessories, home decor items, and baby shower gifts.
Coelho’s company was featured in Calgary’s Child Magazine and in Shop Local Canada’s blog. Her products have also traveled all the way to New York City, participating in the Fifth World Amigurumi Exhibition.
7. Prairieknotco, Saskatchewan
Janet Foth created Prairieknotco three years ago building on her passion for making extraordinary artistic creations using her sewing machine. She enjoys the entire creation process and being able to share her passion with her community and beyond. Foth continues to grow her business, now having the assistance of her daughters. Together, these talented women create various designs and styles through their art. She also has granddaughters aged six and eight, who are eager to learn the art of basket-making. Foth says, “After twenty years of nursing I needed an outlet for creative pursuits. I saw a picture of a rope basket and attempted it. It became [my] mission to create sturdy and straight sided baskets.”
Rope baskets are the main products sold by Prairieknotco, which are made from 100% cotton rope and come in a mixture of colours. These rope baskets can serve many uses and can hold many things, a common use being for plants. Prairieknotco also sells tote bags, coasters, hanging baskets, small bowls, wall trays, and more. They offer their products through local markets, vendors, and online.
Author: Marielle Valmores