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Elissia Sigalow

The Marais co-founder Retail Westport, CT
About Elissia
in my past life, i was an attorney. i know. not exciting, so i won't elaborate on the ins and outs of being a corporate lawyer on wall street. if someone were to ask me: why did you become an attorney, i’d always stutter for a second, and then come up with some nonsensical answer that it just happened. while, in actuality, i did it because it was the safe thing to do. by nature, i’m risk adverse, so becoming a lawyer had a logical and predictable path that i took.

while i did like some elements of my former career, like learning from brilliant colleagues, the constant onslaught of challenges, the required analytics and the sense of achievement for my successes, it wasn’t my dream job.

you then naturally ask, what is your dream job? well, as trite as it sounds, it’s creating a business from the ground up. starting something, operating the machine and growing it. while still practicing law, i considered and worked through sketches of not one nor two, but multiple different ventures. none came to fruition. in the end, i never really had the guts to go for it.

after years of daydreaming and considering a move, it wasn’t until i became pregnant with my first son that i was able to make that jump. you see, whether i realized it or not, i gave myself the excuse that i wasn’t just leaving my career for some unproven start-up theory, i was leaving it to raise a family. between you and me, we know that was all an excuse, whether I personally understood it or not – clearly, many women resume their legal careers after having children. but, the door was open, so I took it, and left the practice of law.

after years of exploring the possibility of tons of new ventures, i learned, for me at least, the business discovery had to be organic. i couldn't just sit down for hours, brainstorm and unveil a company. (i couldn't figure out the answer, like a good lawyer would) i had to just see it. kind of like dating. you can't look for it. it will find you. if you look, you'll fail miserably.

so, it wasn’t until i embarked on a 15-month long life-changing venture of building my family residence that i had that a-ha moment. for a year and a half, i haggled, searched, researched, called, travelled and compared: blood, sweat and, actually, a few tears (very few). it was through this building process that i discovered the marais. with this epiphany, i mentally went through a reality checklist. (1) was there an unfilled gap in the market – check. (casually chic home décor, specifically seating, only readily accessible abroad.) (2) was there a way to make this model unique and attractive to consumers. check (through direct to consumer sales . (3) did i love every second i thought about home seating. check (like, beyond love it.)

as you already now know, after having my first son, i embarked on my new professional identity – that of an entrepreneur. for the most part, my gateway to the marais is a story of me dabbling in, and purchasing, local companies – all of them already working businesses that were in need of TLC. i was a fixer of sorts for these businesses. i issue spotted and repaired broken company pieces. some ventures were victory stories; others, not so much. but, all gave me just a little more confidence to launch something from scratch.

loyalty, honesty & hard work

How many kids? Ages?

/ Male / 8 years old
/ Male / 5 years old

Interested In

Collaborating, Networking

Words you live by/quotes you love

loyalty, honesty & hard work

What special skill, talent or gift would you like to give back to the community?

brand collaboration and marketing.

What is your biggest business challenge right now?

N/A

Why do you want to be a part of heymama?

the importance of empathy, communication and advice from a community facing some of the same challenges in life, such as work-life balance. the future workforce includes strong female leaders, and hey mama is an ideal channel for connecting this community.

xx Elissia Sigalow

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