82: Trading Corporate Fashion Careers for Fashion Tech Startup Life, Family & Fitness with Sarah and Melissa of Bezels & Bytes

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On today’s show, we speak with not one, but two female founders who left solid positions at major fashion retailers after more than a decade in the ranks to start a wearable tech accessories company turning the blah fitness tracker on your wrist into a where’d-you-get-that accessory. They’re also both moms of young children, getting schooled in the real-life Tetris game of balancing parenthood, entrepreneurship, staying active and staying sane.

Meet this week’s guests, Sarah Shapiro & Melissa Koerner, co-founders of Bezels & Bytes.

After more than a decade at Bloomingdales and GAP, respectively, Sarah and Melissa met through a mutual friend and bonded over their interest in staying active and fit after having children, but wanting to do it with style. Here’s the thing: they didn’t just talk about it over a glass of wine. They turned what started as an impromptu conversation into a company that they first tested via Indiegogo. Then, after validating the idea there, Sarah and Melissa have grown their initial produce line into an ecommerce brand with bracelets, charms, necklaces and leather bags all designed to camouflage and enhance activity monitors by FitBit and – coming soon – the Apple Watch.

This episode brought to you with support from the FEST-ive folks at Betabrand. Save 20% off when you shop and use code SPIRIT20. But wait, there’s more below!

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Listen to today’s conversation for Sarah and Melissa’s journey from corporate fashion to starting their own wearable technology business – and how they are building a brand that’s inherently tied to the success and popularity of other brands.  Stick around for their thoughts on co-founder life, navigating motherhood and business, the benefits of early media attention for their SEO and the great business books they recommend every female entrepreneur pick up and read.

Linkage:

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Recommended reading:

Howard Schultz books

Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose

Recommended podcast:

How I Built It

T-shirt motto: You get what you dress for.

Find more episodes featuring women at the forefront of FEST online at www.Spiritof608.com.



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