to this weeks Guest Hunter, Catherine Choi. She’s the brains behind the brilliant line SoYoung, and we are simply honored to have her on threetwentyeight. She’s a mom to three kids, who just happen to be the inspiration behind SoYoung Inc. After finding something missing in the market (and the experience gained from carting around 3 kids and their stuff) she created the Canadian line of urban bags, which are oriented towards the modern family lifestyle. The entire collection, which includes unisex diaper bags, lunch boxes, cooler bags, and backpacks, are not only beautifully designed but also completely functional. They are thought out down to the tiny (but important) details and all I can say is I’m a huge fan!
It’s hard not to admire Catherine’s refreshing point of view as she puts it out there that “SoYoung is not about diaper bags, or any other product, for that matter. It is about acting on inspiration, and the pursuit of possibility. It’s about watching an idea blossom into reality. And the belief that in order to inspire our kids to empower themselves, we must first take action towards our own self-empowerment.”
Keep reading to find out more of who and what are inspiring this savvy and super talented business owner, as she gives a shout out to some of her favorites below…
GUEST HUNTER, CATHERINE CHOI
I am not the least bit handy, I can’t draw, sew, or do cool crafts. So I’m always in awe of people who can. I consider myself first and foremost a mom who had an idea, and it always kind of makes me laugh when someone calls me a designer. In the years since I started SoYoung, I have met so many talented women, artisans in the true sense of the word. Here are just some of the people whose work inspires me.
Sarra Tang – HOI BO Bags
The minute I saw these handbags I fell in love! They are hand cut, waxed and sewn in Sarra’s studio in Toronto. When she asked me what I did, I kind of gulped and said that I did the opposite of what she did. She was so gracious and actually showed my boys how to sew leather marble sacks while we were there. I don’t think I will ever buy another handbag, I love mine so much!
Kessa Laxton – Patouche
When I found out I was pregnant with a girl (after 2 boys), I was giddy with excitement at FINALLY being able to indulge my obsession with beautiful girly dresses and accessories. One of the first things I bought was Patouche’s red riding hood cape and bonnet. Kessa’s background in art and costume design shine through in everything she creates. Her studio is one floor above mine and I can’t visit her without leaving with yet another one of her creations for my daughter.
Renee Elliott – Eat.Live.Shop.
I met Renee through another uber-talented designer/ friend of mine– Alyssa Kerbel of Mini Mioche (super hip organic cotton clothing for kids). I was in awe of Alyssa’s Queen St window displays and thought she had done them herself. In actual fact, her secret was Renee, who I promptly hired to help me design my trade show booth. She also has a great blog on the side that I adore. And look at this beautiful nursery she designed for Alyssa when she had her 2nd child. She even did all the artwork! Incredible!