After Baby, Tapping Her Inner Entrepreneur

By Elizabeth Kim
The Stamford Advocate, Conn.

Not long after the birth of her son Brian last year, Liz Joy came to a monumental decision. Like so many others, motherhood had brought on a career crisis that also led to soul-searching.

During her early 20s she had climbed the career ladder in human resources, working at a law firm in New York City.

More recently, she moved back to Stamford, landed a position at an energy company in the city and got married. Now, the idea of juggling family and a corporate career didn’t sit well with her.

“I did love my job,” she said. “But I knew I always wanted to be my own boss.”

The answer, she discovered, lay just at her fingertips. Back in 2009, Joy started a blog about interior design. The hobby quickly morphed into a passion for the art history major–she found herself devoting countless hours to working on her website, Shorely Chic, and exchanging emails with other design-obsessed bloggers.

It was a clear sign, she realized, of what she should be doing. So during her maternity leave last summer, she decided that it was “the perfect time to say goodbye to my corporate life.”

Not long after, in September 2013, she launched Pure Joy Paperie, a line of custom-designed stationery and print products. Having started on Etsy, she has to date sold about 14,000 items to 500 customers.

Joy, 29, is part of the wave of so-called “mompreneurs,” moms who elect to leave nine-to-five office jobs and run their own businesses from home.

While statistics on the trend are elusive, the number of women entrepreneurs in general are clearly on the rise. According an American Express study released in March, women-owned businesses in the U.S. grew by 68 percent from 1997 and 2014.

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