Spill it! Introductions, please!
Hi! I’m Carly and I’m the voice behind my eponymous blog CARLY. I live in New Jersey with my husband, one year old son, and two dogs. Some current obsessions of mine right now are pickleball, needlepoint, and working my way through my TBR pile!
Let’s get the rundown on how you turned a creative outlet into a business!
I started my blog in 2008 as a creative outlet from the stressors of school. I was a freshman at Georgetown and feeling uninspired and overwhelmed by the responsibilities of being a student athlete. At the time, “social media” wasn’t really a thing. As my college career progressed, social media started to take off and by the time I graduated, there was definitely a career to be had with social media. I wasn’t sure that I could take my blog full time, so I got a regular job. About a year later, I felt like I really could make my blog a full time job for myself and I never looked back! While I absolutely got lucky with the timing of starting a blog, I also have to give myself credit for taking it seriously and working pretty hard behind the scenes to grow my audience. It definitely didn’t happen overnight!
Mom, entrepreneur, you do it all – how do you keep your cool with so many balls in the air?
The honest truth is that I don’t! And what I do do, I definitely don’t do it alone! I’m so grateful for my husband and family and childcare providers and the people who help me with business. I couldn’t do it by myself. Right now I’m in my “motherhood season;” I’m prioritizing being a mom. I just know I can never get these years back. After so many years of putting my business first, I do feel a little guilty, but I know I’m doing what’s best for my family! And I know I’m so lucky that I do get to do both. I don’t take the flexibility and freedom for granted.
We’ve loved working with you on our new collection! What’s been your favorite part of the process so far?
Seeing the pieces in person was surreal! It was fun seeing mockups and going back and forth on designs with renderings and even seeing product images from the factory, but nothing can compare to holding the pieces in my own hands! So much of my work is digital and it just makes it that much better to have a tangible product at the end of the day.
What’s your favorite product from the collection and why?
Don’t make me choose! I love everything because the collection really does fit into my everyday life (and I hope it will fit into yours, too). The two pouches are going to be some of my most used pieces from the collection, I already know! I am constantly switching between bags and sometimes I just want the essentials. (My Kindle also fits like a dream, which is a happy bonus!) I am also proud of how the tote liner came out– we mocked it after a tote liner I made in 2020 after just relearning how to sew. It’s pretty cool to see it come to life on a larger scale.
And now for a round of rapid fire questions…
- Go-to Summer nail polish: Olive & June “CV” (it is the perfect red)
- Guilty pleasure beach read: Anything by Elin Hilderbrand (but I read guilt-free!)
- Favorite song to blast with the windows down: Harry Styles, forever.
- Fool-proof al fresco appetizer recipe: Corn salsa
- Summer cocktail of choice: A margarita
- Warm-weather outfit on repeat: White jeans, oversized button down, sandals
- Summer travel plans: Nantucket!
Spill it! Can we take a look inside your N&C x Carly bag right now?