Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Meet the San Diego Mama Behind...

Since we're celebrating motherhood this month, I thought it very appropriate to feature Rachel ..the super-talented mama behind Mamma Made Designs. This darling website has beautiful clothing for girls, boys and Mammas. They just came out with their summer line...check it out! Meet Rachel!

How long have you lived here?
I moved to San Diego from New Jersey ten years ago because I got married. My husband is from Escondido. I really didn’t like it for the first year and a half. It’s so different from the East Coast. Then…it kind of grew on me.

Why did you start your business?
Before I had children, I worked in the theatre world sewing and “building” costumes. After I got married and moved here, I worked for the San Diego Opera, Repertory Theatre, and Lambs Players Theatre. After the birth of my first child, I stopped working to become a full time Mom. However, I couldn’t stop dreaming and creating. I started to put my creative energies into designing and creating for my daughter as well as the children around me. Mamma Made was born.

What is your favorite thing about running your business?
I have two favorite parts. Finding the fabrics I’m going to use for the new season is always exciting for me. My sister, who is also a part of this venture, tells me that I design backwards. I find the fabric first, and the design creates itself in my head.

My second favorite part is the relationship that forms between myself and my Mamma Made kids. With the garment, I send them a handwritten personalized note telling them that like the garments, they are beautifully and uniquely hand-crafted. I receive so many pictures, handmade paintings, and letters from these children because the garments make them feel so very special. I truly feel that a Mamma Made garment is more than just a piece of clothing—it’s also a special piece of art.

What is your all-time favorite thing about living in San Diego?
I confess I am spoiled by the weather. It’s so beautiful all the time. The few times that we have rain, I love that too. Weather, weather, weather.

Where is your favorite place to eat in San Diego?
Hmm….there are so many wonderful restaurants to eat here and so many different kinds of cuisine. For a more expensive upscale restaurant, I love to go to the Hotel Del for lunch and get the lobster bisque. It is amazingly good and it’s also really nice to look out on the ocean while you eat. I also love Rubios for a quick meal with the kids. It took me awhile as a girl from the East Coast to brave the fish taco, but once I tried it, I was hooked.

Where is your favorite place to go with your child/children in San Diego?
Balboa Park is always a favorite. We love the fountain—the kids could run around there for hours. The park there is nice as well. Oh, and don’t forget the Science Museum. The kids love the Science Museum. It’s a great inexpensive day of fun.

Where is your favorite place to go without your child (with your husband or girlfriends)?
Shopping! (Not with my husband
J) I love to walk around outside by myself, get a coffee, and just look and listen. Sometimes when I can sneak out, I’ll see a movie by myself. I love that. People always seem to look at you a bit strangely or talk a bit excessively when you are by yourself, but I love to listen to the peace and quiet. Anyone who has three girls knows exactly what I’m talking about.

Any insider San Diego secrets to share? Shopping tips, eating tips, driving tips, etc….
Food tip: There is the most amazing Italian restaurant in a little strip mall in
La Mesa called Antiqua Trattoria. My husband and I go there almost every year for Valentine’s Day. We found it by accident and it’s the best kept secret!

Driving tip: Fear for your life! I swear when I first moved here I would come home from work and tell my husband, “I almost died today three times!” You definitely need to drive defensively around here. I’m getting used to it now. I hope so, after ten years!

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