I get asked a lot about where the name Nine56 came from. And the underwhelming answer is that my family helped me come up with the name and I picked it because it sounded better than our other options. Not the inspiring story you were hoping for…keep reading.
As I dug deeper into the message of my label and how I wanted to serve women, I knew that I wanted the name to mean more. So here is the story of how put meaning into a seemingly meaningless name.
Just after my husband and I started renting our first home together, I was sitting on a pillow, working from our coffee table because I hadn’t set up my studio yet. It was late morning and was staring at the blank screen of my laptop with the cursor blinking back at me, wondering what to do next. I had recently left my day job as a seamstress so I wasn’t used to spending all day alone working on my brand.
I felt overwhelmed by all of the questions about what my life was going to be and what my days would look like. I was sure that to justify not having a ‘real’ job, I would have to complete a long checklist of items every day. Has anyone else been here? But without the expectations of peers and a manager of what I was supposed to be doing, I felt lost.
As I sat there, I looked at the clock and it happened to be 9:56 am.
I started thinking about all of my friends who were sitting at their corporate desks doing what a fresh college grad was supposed to be doing. I wasn’t doing that. I started thinking about the successful clothing labels that had come before me, I felt doubt that I could ever be on their playing field. The more I compared and measured, the worse I felt about myself.
If only I could have reminded myself: STAY IN YOUR OWN LANE! Stop measuring your worth by the things that you accomplish and the opinions of others, I would have reached this conclusion much earlier. But it took me a while to realize that comparing myself to others was NOT serving me or the kick-booty label that I was building.
As I have continued with Nine56 and been able to meet and collaborate with so many amazing women, I have noticed something. These women are students, moms, educators, bloggers, artists, farmers, makers and so much more. None of these women are climbing the corporate ladder, but instead they are redefining what success looks like by doing work that serves them and others.
I am not trying to hate on corporate jobs because they are a great fit for some people. But maybe next time you glance at your clock and it is 9:56am, you will take a moment to be mindful about what you are doing. Are you doing work that you love? If you aren’t, maybe it’s time to consider a change.
And if you are resisting a change because of financial reasons, consider your lifestyle. Does it encourage love? or fear? Are you always working to make ends meet? Courtney Carver brilliantly suggests in her book Soulful Simplicity: Instead of working so hard to make ends meet, focus on having fewer ends.
That is what Nine56 is all about, helping women create a beautifully simple life and giving them tools to facilitate wellness.
Nine56 is a name that celebrates all of the incredible women who are living their best lives by creating their own routine. Because they are not bound to a schedule or to the expectations of others, 9:56 am looks different for each one of them. And I am so honored that my clothing can be part of the stories they tell.