Girl Boss | Kailee Wright and Megan Papworth of Stay + Co

Totally inspired by Sophia Amoruso’s book of the same name, Girl Boss is a series focused on fierce, determined women who go with their gut and create their dream businesses in the process.

Girl Boss | Kailee Wright and Megan Papworth of Stay + Co

I’m not exactly sure how I discovered the gorgeousness that is STAY + Co. (although Instagram would be a pretty decent guess), I just know that as soon as I found them I fell in love. Their simple, beautiful aesthetic is just so calming. Featuring lots of neutrals and classic designs with the occasional happy burst of color, their pieces are timeless. The more I saw of their work, the more I wanted to know about the powerhouse team behind the brand. I’m so glad they found some time to share more about themselves and their business!

Tell me a little bit about your business. When did you start it? What inspired you to get it going? 

Megan started her home decor and textile company (Goods by Grinn) at the beginning of 2013 with the need to help support her family while her husband was in dental school. Kailee started her kids fashion line (Miss J Handmade) in the summer of 2013 with the intent to fulfill a hole in the kids clothing market. We both are die hard lovers of design and feel the need to have something that pushes us and something that fulfills our creative desires, especially as mothers. We both live in Southern California and knew we needed to take advantage of the resources that are close by in Los Angeles.

Both companies grew quickly enough so that when the beginning of 2014 came around, something needed to give. We met in January of 2014 and instantly knew we would be a good team. With different personalities and perspectives on things, we kind of make up for each other’s weaknesses and play on each other’s strengths. With the same vision for our companies, we put our heads together, got busy (with our littles in tow) and created a vision for our new company, STAY and Co. We are so excited for what we having coming. There is something about seeing your vision come to life that is simply awesome and rewarding!

stay + co pillows

How do you balance life and running your business?

We aren’t sure there is ever really a balance… but we try hard to make one. We have decided as partners to hire help. With the launch of our company, we hired a shipping coordinator who completely took care of that for us. The insane amount of time we spent into the wee hours of the night doing packaging and shipping was the thing that was putting us over the edge. Realizing this was a huge relief and now we can focus our attention on the designing part and our blog and free up time with for our families on a weekly basis.

We have also set things up so that we share all the responsibilities such as social media, blog posts, customer service emails, etc. On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays one of us will do everything while the other person steps away and has the day to not stress about work. Then on Tuesday, Thursdays and Saturdays, the other person takes the reins. We have our work days and our mom days so that we can give 100% of our attention to our families on our days off. Compartmentalizing it has helped each of us at this phase of our company.

stay + co blanket and headband

Does being a woman effect your business? 

We don’t think necessarily… We are hard workers and don’t feel anyone we have worked with would have treated us any different had we been men. We also feel it kinda gives us an edge. Our fabulous production team always encourages us and lifts us up with the sweetest words about trying to conquer and do so much as far as motherhood and being businesswomen. They are so encouraging about involving our little people.

What inspires you creatively?

We have always loved fashion and design, styling ourselves, our kids and our houses. Our little people are our biggest inspirations. They are our everyday life. We love the things they come up with—ideas for their rooms, their clothes or even our house. It always gets the brain rolling.

stay + co | oh what fun gold foil art print

Do you have any procrastination techniques that you always fall back on? How do you break out of them?

Haha. Sometimes we are great and totally on top of it, but then other times real life hits and we just procrastinate! Something that has helped us a bit is Evernote. It’s a fabulous app that we both use that we can break everything down into folders: projects, deadlines, etc. We also have an editorial calendar that we try to have planned out at least a month and half ahead, and we use it daily. We just both know when deadlines are and make sure that things are done when they need to be. If you find a new way to break out of procrastination please let us know. 😉

stay + co | baby in headband

Do you have any tips for other ladies who are looking to turn their passion into a business?

We both feel like as you get older, become moms, and get into the daily grind, sometimes as women it is easy to lose sight of what we as individuals (aside from being a mom and wife) want out of life. It is important to both of us to keep our minds busy and looking forward to something—if we have that self identity, then we are happier all around. So with that being said, we would say to GO FOR IT! Whatever it is. Both of us had very minimal budgets starting out, but with an original and solid idea, and of course, some persistence, anything is possible. Surround yourself with people that inspire you and that are happy for your successes. This is key. There is such a great community of creatives out there, we each have been so inspired and uplifted by. Don’t be scared… have no regrets!

Stay + Co romper in mini salmon stripe

Written by Jennifer Garry
Jen is a freelance writer and girl mom from New York. When she's not knee-deep in glittery crafts and girl talk, you can probably find her sprawled across her couch in the middle of a Netflix marathon with dark chocolate smeared on her face. The struggle is real.