A paper designer and event stylist, Loralee Lewis’ talent and products have been featured in the 2011 Emmy Award Gift Bags, Marie Claire Enfants Magazine, Babiekins Magazine, Women’s Day and in many more publications, television events, and blogs. Loralee’s designs pair vintage and rustic styles with elegant and chic accents. Her talents don’t just stop at paper designs though! Not only is she a mother of 4 beautiful children but she creates gorgeous invitation collections, offers tutorials, recipes and how-tos, and styles gorgeous weddings, celebrations and holiday events. She really does it all without ever sacrificing quality. I invite you to Meet Loralee and check out her beautiful designs below as well as on her blog at LoraleeLewis.com.
My path to becoming a designer was not a direct course by any means! Prior to becoming a mother, I flew around the world and gave presentations to large corporations. I was a very serious girl with a serious job. When we began the process of adopting my first two children, I realized flying to Europe several times a month would not make me mother of the year. I quit and became a stay at home mom. To keep my skills sharp and continue my serious-girl persona, I began a master’s degree in the evenings. I was at the end of my master’s program and decided to search my heart and find my true passion (something I probably should have done prior to beginning a master’s program…or a bachelor’s for that matter). Becoming a mother taught me to look inside myself and find my true talents. (It’s amazing what a girl learns while cleaning up two million Cheerios off the kitchen floor). Around this time, I took graphic design classes and began my blog. I posted my personal events and custom invitations. I’d receive emails from readers saying, “I saw the invitation you created for your daughter’s party. I need 400 of them for an event at the New York Botanical Gardens. Is this something that you do?” or “I fell in love with the invitation design you did for your Cinco de Mayo party. Can you design one for our charity? ” These emails encouraged me. After some personal digging and more Cheerio picking, I realized my true talent was making things beautiful. It was a talent I had always possessed, but never given much thought to. I realized for the first time that the ease I had in designing, fashion, computers, and art was a gift. I slowly opened my mind up to being a professional designer. When I finally decided to take my un-serious passion seriously, the company boomed. I’ve been blessed to have more work than I can handle.
What is your favorite part of your daily work … when you reflect on the day, what is most rewarding?
Seeing the final product! When I walk into the studio at 5pm and see the stack of packages ready to be shipped out, my heart skips a beat. I enjoy going through each package and seeing every item beautifully printed. To some clients chagrin, my company does not offer printables (all my products are printed in-house), but I am so glad we don’t. Otherwise, my clients wouldn’t receive the same high quality items for their events and I would miss out on seeing them right before their big debut.
Do you have any advice for other working moms?
Oh my goodness! I wish all the working moms would send me advice! It’s a constant balancing act with four children under five. I can think of two pieces of advice. 1) Done is better than perfect. I chant this to myself throughout my day. I am my worst critic and so this phrase helps me not to spend hours and hours on finding the perfect grey for a wedding suite when I already have five greys that look fabulous. 2) The most important clients are within the walls of your own home. If it’s a choice between a client or my children, there is no discussion. It’s easier said than done, but I’ve always been taught: No other success can compensate for failure in the home. I try to live that.
What is your most memorable event design project?
My most memorable event design project has actually not yet happened! We just adopted my second daughter from The Congo, Georgianna Leigh. She is four years old and never had a birthday party. I am in the midst of planning her “first” birthday party. Most children do not remember their first birthday. Georgianna will. I am doing my best to make it memorable.
If you could style an event for anyone in the world, who would it be?
I would die to style Taylor Swift’s wedding. I just adore her!
What thing/place/event were you most recently inspired by?
I recently went to the most charming dairy town in Idaho and almost fell off my seat in inspiration. I love to combine rustic with luxury.
Where is your favorite place you have traveled to?
I have been fortunate to travel the world, as well as live in two developing countries. So this is a difficult question. Once, I was blessed to travel to a very rural village in Uganda. There was no one else for miles and miles. The village was so excited to see foreigners they made a special feast. We ate with our hands out of little wooden bowls. After dinner, some little boys hand cranked a radio to play music. The children began to dance and I joined them. We danced in the moonlight for what seemed like hours. Honestly, it’s one of my favorite memories of all time. I’ll never forget it.
What is your favorite Rosenberry Rooms product(s)?
I adore your Emma’s Treasures Mansion Bed. I am planning on buying two of them for my girls. On an unrelated note, I can’t look at your crib collection because every time I do I want to have another baby!
Do you have any news that you would like to share, perhaps about upcoming events or projects?
There is a lot of fun going on over here at the studio. I just finished up the summer and fall photo shoots for Babiekins Magazine. The fall print issue will be available at Barnes and Noble; it’s lovely. I have also teamed up with Zulily and created several exclusive party packages that will be available shortly. Perhaps my favorite new project is Loralee Lewis Wedding. I have been designing custom wedding suites for over a year now, but just began introducing my ready-to-order collections for my website. There are few things I love to crash more than a wedding and so it’s been pure bliss designing each collection.
Now, just for fun:
Favorite Food: Chips and Salsa
Favorite TV Show: I just got into Missing with Ashley Judd. As a mom, it’s so intense.
Favorite Movie: Harry Potter Movies. As a mother, they’ve gotten me through so many sleepless nights.
Favorite Weekend Activity: Going to the petting zoo with my kids.
Favorite Musician/Band: Louis Armstrong. I melt when I hear, “What a Wonderful World.”