(Photo by Stephen Babcock)
A few years ago, L’Oréal Johnson came up with the idea to launch a line of reversible clothing for women. She knew she could create the versatile pieces herself, yet she needed more guidance when it came to running a business. After a four-month program last spring, she’s ready to debut Corporates to Cocktails at a fashion show later this year.
Johnson was a member of the first cohort of Moms as Entrepreneurs Academy at Open Works. The 16-week program offers a curriculum on business planning and financing, as well as training and access to tools at the Station North makerspace. Through a partnership with Etsy, members were also trained in setting up an online store.
Launched last year, it marked an expansion for Moms as Entrepereneurs, the program created by Tammira Lucas and Jasmine Simms. The Academy is accepting applications for a fall 2018 cohort, which starts Sept. 3.
Johnson, who is based in West Baltimore, entered the program with sewing skills. When it came to business training, “They started from the very beginning,” she said. Classes on registering a business and budgeting were melded with training on the mindset that comes with being an entrepreneur and tips on setting a to-do list for the day. She also appreciated childcare that was offered, which is one of the mom-friendly elements Lucas and Simms sought to include.
After presenting at the expo held in June, she’s now getting ready for a Corporate to Cocktails fashion show on December 1.-30-
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