EP 7 — Creating Handyma'am, A Women's Workwear Company, with Founder Bella Weinstein

Contrapreneur The Podcast Interviews Handyma'am Women's Workwear

Handyma’am was born in 2014 when Bella found herself underwhelmed with the selection of well-made, durable clothing for women in the marketplace.

Working as a hairstylist, with a ton of hands-on hobbies—woodworking, riding motorcycles, tearing down walls and building new ones—Bella needed workwear that could fit with her can’t-sit-still lifestyle. So she got hands-on and made her own!

Bella had no background in design or fashion, but she found the resources she needed to create a technical, super-durable women’s workwear piece. Bella’s story is something else. We talk in detail about using kickstarter to launch a business, then & now.

Bella shares her vision for slow, quality product-focused growth, talks about the challenges of producing clothing in America and shares what she’s learned about business and herself through her work with Handyma’am.


QUOTES FROM EPISODE SEVEN:

Ultimately, if you want to learn anything you can. If you have the drive you can figure it out.
— Bella Weinstein
Collaboration is the way of business in the future.
— Bella Weinstein
I banned the word busy.
— Sarah Danu
You can’t be an entrepreneur without self-care. If you’re not putting yourself first, you’re not going to have an idea that’s creative enough to start a business.
— Sarah Danu
Reevaluate and reevaluate often.
— Bella Weinstein

 
 

In This Episode We Talk About:

  • The workwear Handyma’am creates

  • Function comes first for Handyma’am goods but form is very important too

  • Bella’s background has nothing to do with clothing business

  • Handyma’am came from Bella’s need for clothing that could keep up with her active hands-on lifestyle

  • Learning new things with grit and drive

  • Didn’t want to go through the effort of making just one jumpsuit, so a business was born

  • The spark for Handyma’am came from a passion for collecting jumpsuits

  • Bella was already called Handyma’am by her roommates and this is where her name came from

  • Starting a business with Kickstarter

  • Designing the Kickstarter to enrich rather than just raise money for her coverall production

  • The financial reality of expanding sizing and perfecting fit

  • Word spread rapidly through friends and family because she already had a small run of coveralls in circulation for about 1.5 years before her kickstarter

  • Products designed for longevity and working on a repair aspect of the business

  • Learning that delegating is a weakness and overcoming it

  • Collaborations with other handyma’am business owners to lift everybody up - finds collaborations more interesting than always focusing on releasing new products

  • Mental health, success & business

  • Being okay with slow growth

  • Using instagram to sell in the changing time of instagram

  • Elevating women who support Handyma’am as what they want to be seen as

  • Exercise as a form of self care

Resources

 
 
Handyma’am is her own women at this point. She’s strong. She’s funny but smart. She’s someone breaking down stereotypes. She’s beautiful & feminine, but also very handy.
— Bella Weinstein
 
Contrapreneur Podcast — Creating Handyma'am, A Women's Workwear Company, with Founder Bella Weinstein
Contrapreneur EP 7 — Creating Handyma'am, A Women's Workwear Company, with Founder Bella Weinstein
Being happy is more important than being busy.
— Bella Weinstein
Sarah Danu