17 Nov K&J features women entrepreneurs: Julie2
Being a mom, wife, sister, friend, woman myself… running my own business, I always wondered how other women do… juggling between job, kids, husband, family and friends… and always looking fashionable and relaxed.
So I think it is time to put them in the spotlights! They deserve it so much! I have a lot of great women entrepreneurs around me… it was not easy to choose… I focused on young moms (you have to admit this is a very happy but also a very challenging period), being not into fashion (then it is too easy to be fashionable :)).
So we had a little chat with some great women, trying to find out how they manage it all. Third in line is a duo, Julie Grangé and Julie Van der Donckt, co-owners of Julie2!
Can you tell us who you are??
My name is Julie Grangé, I have a wonderful husband and 2 kids, a boy Felix and a girl Lila. And I am Julie Van Der Donkt, living with Mathieu and our 2 boys, Gaston and Hugo.
Julie G : I’m born in a family with lots of stylists, so when I was young I wanted to do something in that direction. However my parents convinced me architecture would be a better, more serious choice. And actually during my college years, I started to love this combination of art & science.
Julie VDD : At the age of 6 I already said I wanted to become an architect, and the day I needed to to make a choice on which education I wanted to follow, I decided to do what I had always talked about. It went really smoothly, as it was meant to be.
Julie G : Julie2 has been created in 2005. We had already met at a former employer, and we really clicked. We both went our own way, working for a different architect. Then one day, somebody asked me to do a project for them. Interior design, impossible to do it alone, I asked Julie VDD if she was interested. That was the first of many projects together. Being pregnant I did not immediately leave my employer.
Julie VDD : I did, after the second project, I felt it was the right thing to do. We worked so well together, and I wanted to grab this opportunity.
How do you combine business and family life??
Julie G : Actually that is not so easy. We are also mothers, and want to be good mothers, and combine it with being good interior designers…
Julie VDD : Know yourself,… we often have the question why, after 10 years of working together, we haven’t got a big company. But we have chosen to combine motherhood, with being a damn good interior designer. We are not managers, we do not want to manage 10 people, we want to stay in touch with our job as interior designer.
Julie G : The fact that our houses are our offices and showroom, guarantee a huge interaction between family life and clients. Our children come in and make noise after school, they think all our clients are our friends. But that’s who we are, and until now it has worked perfectly.
I do try not to have clients coming over after 5pm, when the kids need to do there homework, eat, take a bath… Off course, mails and designing goes on after they are into bed.
What are the pitfalls, do you have suggestions for young entrepreneurs??
Julie G : be sure to have a good accountant :-)!
Julie VDD : It might not be the most attractive thing to say, but I have found it very good for our career that we had kids at a later age (Julie is 36 and the kids are 2,5years and 6monts old). We were able to do long hours, establish a certain clientele before we were caught up in motherhood.
Julie G : It’s true that now we can more easy manage appointments, because we grew into motherhood while building our name. We didn’t have our kids at the same time, so Julie could help me and I helped her during our pregnancies.
Which item of our Fall/Winter ‘16 collection did you choose and why??
Julie VDD : I have chosen the Finley, knitted scarf. It is so soft, and this melée black and blue are absolutely my colors!
Julie G : Mmmm I like the poncho Alexia, It looks so luxery and cosy. As I am always running around, it can easily be used to replace my coat. Love it!
Thank you very much Julie & Julie!
For more info: http://www.julie2.be/impressions/