How It All Began - Starting Wildly Enough

Every business owner has a unique story in how they got to where they are. The inspiration for their business. How it went from idea to reality. The surprises from the first months and years (because there are always surprises.)

But recently, Lauren and I realized we haven't told Wildly Enough's story. And it's a pretty special one.

How Wildly Enough Began

Chelsea Brennan and Lauren Garafalo, founders of Wildly Enough, on the beach in Oregon.

Since 2018, Lauren and I have worked together on my first business - Smart Money Mamas - where we help women redefine their relationships with money and build wealth in alignment with their values. Prior to that, I was a hedge fund investment manager (shocking, I know) and had left that job to do work that better aligned with my values. Financially empowering the people who need it most.

In the summer of 2021, we were preparing to run a course for our mamas - 30 Days From Passion to Profit - that would teach them how to start a profitable business in 30 days.

Now, we know how intimidating starting a business can be. And we also know all the mindset blocks that keep so many people believing they can't make money in their passions or while doing good for the world.

So, to make the course even more impactful, we decided to start a new business side-by-side with the women taking our course. Each day, they would see the steps we were taking to help inspire their own action.

Just a teaching tool, right?

Oh, how things change...

From Teaching Tool to Full-Time Business

Lauren and I have long wanted a business that let us lean into our creative passions. (After drawing hundreds of stickers, Lauren now laughs that just a few years ago I would have told you I wasn't a creative person #mindsetblocks)

So, in August 2021 we completed the course with our community of moms. We filled out the worksheets, built a business plan, created our first products, and launched right along with our students.

As part of our commitment to showing people that you can have a profitable business that also makes an impact, we made a promise to always donate 10% of profits to Together Rising.

We listed our products here on our own site, on Etsy, and joined the wholesale marketplace, Faire, so we could sell wholesale to small and medium sized businesses.

And the universe - as it so often does - took us by surprise.

Wildly Enough blossomed into a thriving business with products stocked in over 100 boutiques and bookstores in our first six months, over 300 in our first year. Now, a little over 18 months in, we're in over 650 stores and are completing our first deals with national retail chains.

We've expanded from my garage - shown below - to a small office that we are now starting to outgrow.

White pegboard wall with rows of clear shelves with stickers, under a vinyl hanging sign that says Wildly Enough.

Today, we still run Smart Money Mamas but Wildly Enough has shifted from a teaching tool to our full-time focus. And we couldn't be more grateful.

Lauren and I have been given the gift of running a business that we absolutely love. Where we find such joy in what we do, where all of our products are made in the USA,  and we get to give back to a fantastic charity organization in Together Rising.

But, most of all, we get to show our audience at Smart Money Mamas that it can be done. That you can lean into your passions and stick to your values, and still find success.

Where It All Goes From Here

Where does Wildly Enough go from here? Where will we be in a year, or 3, or 5?

I'll tell you what I'd tell the women in the Smart Money Mamas community.

Goals are great. Long-term plans are good. But at the end of the day, you can't cling to tightly too those plans. Life surprises us. All we can do is keep taking the next right step. The step that is true to ourselves and what matters most to us.

For us, that means continuing to create designs that remind people that they are completely and wildly enough, just the way they are. That encourage our customers to uphold values of equality, kindness, and love in all they do (including how they treat themselves.)

As for the rest? We can't wait to continue this beautiful journey with our customers, friends, and loved ones.

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