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Check Out Riki Edwards’s Story

Today we’d like to introduce you to Riki Edwards.

Hi Riki, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today.
I first came up with the idea for Sugar Beans when my little one was just a couple of months old. I was inspired by seeing some friends of mine struggle with their relationships with their mothers and, in turn, reflecting on my relationship with my own mother. I guess you could say she was my original inspiration. My mom and I have always been close; our relationship is one based on mutual love, respect, openness, and the freedom to be and explore who I was. Like any relationship, we have seen our ups and downs, but her consistency and persistence throughout the years have created a strong foundation for us. It is something that I aspire to foster in my own relationships with my little “Sugar Bean.” Enter Sugar Beans, a mommy-and-me fashion company.

I wanted to create something that would inspire mothers to go beyond just the title of mom and to connect with their little ones on a deeper level. “Motherhood Connected” is the term I like to use. As I begin to develop the concept, sketching and thinking over the next several months, I realized that I wanted this journey to not only include mothers but to include the generations of women in a family. I want mothers and women to feel supported in their journey and to be inspired to break generational norms, in favor of creating a beautiful lasting connection with their families. Each design I have created so far has a special meaning behind the words, which are meant to be more than just fashion and fun. They’re meant to be inspiring, provoke change and conversation, and create a community of connected mothers from all walks of life.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
The smooth road is definitely not the term I would use more like a rough ride on a country dirt road I am still trying to figure it all out and, to be honest, I don’t know that it ever stops. I am a single mother who works full-time, so I have certainly had some challenges. Some of the biggest challenges for me have been in finding the time and energy to dedicate to something that needs a lot of time. I have had to learn to balance my own expectations and tune into when is the right time to push forward heavily and when should I step back and take a break because I need a rest or need to focus on being a mom.

Another big challenge for me has been navigating the constant pressures of social media. It seems like that is a huge selling platform these days, but trying to navigate the intricacies of it all and keep up with the ever-changing trends can be a tough act when balancing the rest of life as well. On top of that, I have faced more than my share of challenges with production and deciding the best route to take when it comes to the products themselves. I often find myself seeking advice from other business owners, including my own mom who has her own businesses to run.

Talking with others allows me to realize that I am not alone in my challenges and can help me come up with creative solutions to problems I may not even see.

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
Even though Sugar Beans is a small business, I like to think of my shirts as a more creative art. Each piece is uniquely thought after and designed to invoke emotion and create connection. I think what makes these pieces unique is the story behind each shirt. They are more than just a simple run-of-mill “mom” shirt.

They use words like “bold,” “kind,” and “mama’s girl” to invoke emotion into our motherhood journey. Everything from the colors used to the word choice is a conscious thought above and beyond simply mommy and me fashion.

It’s meant to inspire us when we’re in the trenches of motherhood.

We’re always looking for the lessons that can be learned in any situation, including tragic ones like the Covid-19 crisis. Are there any lessons you’ve learned that you can share?
How hard it is to find a simple t-shirt let alone one all in the same color for a mother, kid, toddler, and baby. I jest but not really. I think the lesson from that though has been the need to dig deeper and find creative solutions.

It’s been realizing that sometimes success and victories don’t look like what I have planned in my head and that sometimes it takes time to reach those victories, possibly even longer than I thought.

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Image Credits
Ashley De La Rosa Portraits

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