Hello friendly faces! It’s that time of the week! We’re back with a new CNSMoms’ Meet a Mom spotlight brought to you in part by Mary Gifford of Gifford Law*
This week’s we’re introducing the lovely and fashionable mama of two and budding mompreneur of her brand new children’s fashion line NO + ZO KIDS FASHION, Joanna Neumann! Joanna chats with us about the inspiration behind this endeavor, the name of her business, what makes her children’s clothing line stand out and a little mompreneur inspo just for you! Welcome, Joanna!
Please introduce yourself. Where are you from originally? What city do you live in now?
Hi. My name is Joanna Neumann. Most people call me Jo. I grew up overseas. I moved to the States with my family when I was 12 years old from Poland. Learning new language and adapting to a new culture has been an adventure, that’s for sure. Currently I live in the western suburbs of Chicago, Plainfield/Naperville, with my husband who is a chiropractor, and my two beautiful and busy little girls who keep me on my toes everyday. We enjoy living in the suburbs with little ones- the good schools, the parks and family friendly neighborhoods. But don’t get me wrong, I do miss the city due to its diverse culture and hustle and bustle.
I created NO + ZO KIDS FASHION a little over 2 months ago during all this unknown chaos we are all in. I know, right?! But since having my girls, I’ve developed a passion for kids clothing and decided to go for it.
You’re a mama! How many kiddos do you have and how old are they? Feel free to brag here!
I have 2 girls which I named my business after. Zofia (almost 5) and Nova (almost 3) and we’re thinking of expanding. Zofia is a Polish name and we named Nova after supernova, since she’s our NICU survivor. The girls and I are pretty active. You can find us at gymnastics, tennis, we love to explore new playgrounds, kids museums and hiking trails with our big Weimaraner dog, Zeus.
You certainly have your hands full! What is your least favorite mom task?
My least favorite mom task is doing the dishes. We’re a pretty healthy family and try to eat clean as much as possible with homemade meals, which lead us to lots and lots of dishes. I run our dishwasher about 2 times a day. So anytime I get out of doing the dishes, mainly when I win an argument with my husband, I’m in heaven.
People are usually surprised to find out I enjoy playing poker, I’m very adventurous with a weird sense of humor and that I enjoy working out at 5 in the morning.
What are your favorite local places to spend with the family?
We enjoy going out to eat on weekends. Our favorite local restaurant is Vai’s, an Italian inspired restaurant in Naperville and we love tacos! We like to explore and find good Mexican cuisine. I think we could live off tacos and refried beans. I mean, we got married on a beach in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico if that says anything.
You are a mompreneur! Please introduce NO + ZO KIDS FASHION. Tell us everything from start to where you are now.
My girls inspired me to create NO + ZO KIDS FASHION. I’ve been a stay-at-home mom for 5 years now (previous cosmetology teacher with a degree in Business) and although I enjoy it so much and wouldn’t change it for the world, I needed a hobby. I needed to do something for myself. I wanted to start my creative outlet. And since having my girls, I developed passion for kids clothing. I also wanted to incorporate my girls into the idea – that’s how I knew that kids fashion would be ideal!
Growing up in Europe, I learned to appreciate high-end fashion. When my girls were born, I found myself looking for clothing options outside of what the typical stores around here carry. I yearned to find unique styles that looked not only adorable, but were also comfortable. My momma heart wanted cleaner fabrics, and my Polish roots wanted to connect my girls with the styles I learned to appreciate.
What I learned in my search, was that often I had to look further than the store down the street, and often all the way across the globe. So, I started a children’s clothing line with stylish, often organic, clothes that tiny humans feel comfortable in, and momma hearts feel comfortable with them wearing!
NO + ZO KIDS FASHION partners with small, women owned businesses that create their clothing out of love and passion in small batches mainly in Europe and the US. Carrying clothes MADE WITH LOVE that are trendy, clean and comfortable is my main goal.
Where do you sell your clothing – pop up boutiques, your own studio, online only etc.?
Where do you pull your inspiration?
I’m usually inspired by the fashion world, art, my kids, the gym, on my yoga mat and through traveling, which I absolutely love.
What advice can you give other mamas out there who are looking to start their own small business?
My advice to moms wanting to start their own business is to follow your dreams. Find a passion, a drive, and go for it. Have a goal in mind and do it for you, no matter how hard it is or what anyone else thinks.
What’s on the horizon for your business? Future aspirations, plans….
My plans for the future for NO + ZO KIDS FASHION are to collaborate with other women owned businesses and to grow my business while having as much fun as possible. Making new friends while dressing their tiny humans and living my best life!
How can people find you?
About Our Meet a Mom Sponsor
A very heartfelt thank you to CNSMoms’ Meet a Mom sponsor, Lake Forest mom of three and owner of Gifford Law, a solo Estate Planning Firm (wills and trusts). Mary, we appreciate your support of local moms in our North Shore communities! Learn more about Mary by visiting her Meet a Mom spotlight here!