Have you ever met someone, become friends and after spending time talking discovered that you have probably crossed paths 100 times? That you know all the same people, just didn’t know the other – such is the case with Smarty Mom Victoria Hollidge. We “officially” met when our oldest children started kindergarten together and soon discovered we had probably met or been in the same place many times. Victoria is my friend of many surprises. We were recently at a school function together and next thing I know, she is speaking Spanish. Come to find out she grew up in Mexico City and is now using her past to shape her present. As a very busy wife (married to Doug for 12 years) and mom of 3, Olivia (9), Aidan (8), and Wells (5), Victoria has decided to become a “mompreneur” and has launched WAO Designs and WOW, let me tell you WAO is Super Smarty and Cool. I don’t know how she does it all, volunteers at school, shuttles 3 kids around (very glad soccer is over!!) and launches a new business but that is why she is so Smarty. Let’s meet Victoria…
Tell us about WAO Designs?
Our collections are inspired by pre-Hispanic artistry, in which we combine colorful crystal and glass beads to design glistening wristbands. Our original designs are adapted to today’s trends while promoting the rich artistry of an ancient tribe, the Huicholes, and the sales actively support their cultural survival.
What was the inspiration for WAO Designs?
I was born and raised in Mexico City and found a way to re-connect with my culture by designing genuine handcrafted bracelets that are human-centric. My commitment is not only to WAO Designs, but to a pre-Hispanic tribe and its people. Sales are used to support the tribe and its continuity. It is a gift with a heart.
Any plans to expand and add other products?
We plan on supporting our cause and providing new designs and styles each season, primarily wristbands. We plan to provide affordable luxury to stores in the Southeast, website sales and have plans to expand into additional boutiques in 2010.
How important was the give-back component when deciding to relaunch yourself as working mom?
When I began the design and sought out the artisans, the component that sealed the deal was that my products were supporting their cultural survival.
Most importantly where can we find your super Smarty bracelets?
You can find WAO Designs at Cottage Chic on East Blvd. and Luna’s at the Lake. We also have provided several home shows and trunk shows in Charlotte and are expanding to other cities. Soon you will be able to purchase on www.WAODesigns.com which is under construction. If you are interested in hosting a show, your may contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How has the transition been to go from stay at home mom to working mom with 3 in school?
Like all stages of lives, there is transition. I just take it one day at a time. WAO is an exciting time, watching my youngest go to Kindergarten is hard!
As the mom of 3, what advice would you give new moms?
Manage and Guide, but avoid micro-managing. Be Happy!
How do you make time for yourself and what is your favorite thing to do when you make that time?
I love to go to the beach and be with my family. This is where we relax, play and just leave the crazy pace behind. Between work, school, sports and family, you prioritize what you love most.
As the mom of a daughter and 2 sons, do you try to have mom/daughter time and mom/son time?
Yes, from smaller quiet moments to one-on-one trips with each. I think it is very important to give the children time with each of their parents, especially when there is so much going on around them.
What is your favorite date-nightspot?
We enjoy Basil. Great atmosphere and food.
What is your favorite place to take the whole fam to dinner?
Zio’s – very family friendly and the kids love it.
Favorite family activity?
Family dinner, dance party, and all outdoor activities.
Smartiest way you save $?
Cooking at home and enjoying a family dinner.
What is the best book that you’ve read lately?
Serious book: The Book Thief
Fun book: The Twilight Series
What is the best movie that you have seen lately?
Hard to say…have not seen many, who has time to get away for 2+ hours?
Funniest thing that your children have ever done?
Put a fake crab in my bed….they loved pranking Mommy!
What moment are you most proud of with your children?
When I see them following the Golden Rule without reminders.
What has been your favorite CSP article this far?
I have really enjoyed the Holiday Gift Guides – made my shopping so much easier.
What is Charlotte’s best kept secret?
WAO Designs! And www.Royalcourtcondos.com.
I could not live without my…
Husband, children, family and my tempurpedic pillow!
Thank you Victoria!!
P.S. THE SMARTY ELVES HAVE BEEN HARD AT WORK BRINGING YOU FABULOUS GIVEAWAYS THIS HOLIDAY SEASON!!
It’s not too late to register for the Children’s Theatre Smarty Giveaway! What a great way to start the holiday season! Children’s Theatre of Charlotte is giving one lucky reader a family four-pack to their newest production, Laura Numeroff’s, “If You Take a Mouse to the Movies”. This giveaway will run through Sunday, December 6th, so enter now for your chance to win. Click Here to enter.
The 2nd annual Santa’s Smarty Swag Bag Giveaway has arrived and you won’t want to miss out on this incredible opportunity to win BIG! CSP is featuring $2,000 worth of giveaway products to ONE lucky CSP reader! CLICK HERE TO ENTER TO WIN THE SANTA’S SMARTY SWAG BAG GIVEAWAY, but first be sure you are a newsletter subscriber. (This is required for you to be eligible as a winner.) Our winner will be chosen at 11p on Sunday, December 13th by a random number search. We will contact you that day to let you know that you are our winner, and we’ll feature you as our Giveaway winner on CSP. Pass this blog along to your friends so that you can also be entered to win a free iPod! The more friends who register, the better your chances of winning!
So inspiring to see a Mom going after it all during these challenging times. Way to go!
Victoria, you have hit a home run! Congratulations! These are the most beautiful bracelets of their kind that I have ever seen – Exquisite – Genuine works of art for the wrist! They are like popcorn – you can't just have one! Wishing you continued success and much more!
Victoria, every time I wear one of my WAO Designs bracelets, I get stopped and asked where I got it. They are so unique and can really make an outfit pop. I love wearing 2 or 3 together. I can't wait to see your new Spring designs!
I can't wait for the party I'm hosting for you in CLeveland, Ohio!!!! My friends are going to buy all your inventory 🙂
You are so awesome, Victoria, as are your bracelets! I have enjoyed mine and worn them every day since last week's show. Everyone wants to know where I got them! Keep up the great job you're doing of being a fantastic mother, wife, friend and now, very creative mompreneur!
My dear sweet friend, I am so proud of you! Your designs are as beautiful and unique as you are! Thank you for inspiring me yet again! I love you! :)Beth
Friends – thank you so much for all your support and your compliments! I love what I'm doing and how it is being enjoyed by all. It is a win-win for everyone – especially the Mexican tribe!!
Thank you for posting such a useful, impressive and a wicked article./Wow.. looking good! Child Care VIC