Entrepreneur Spotlight: Lori Herder
Our entrepreneur in the spotlight this month is Lori Herder of Muffs Merino, the eco-friendly creator of conscious comfy knitwear.
Muffs Merino's is a combination of Lori’s love of natural fibres, nature and creativity. Her original product was felted slippers. However, Lori’s true love affair is knitting.
“One day, I bought a pattern, knitted three crop tops, and decided this is what I’m doing.”
Our paths crossed with Lori when she met Kendra (Digital Navigator PoweringON Project Lead) whilst selling her garments at The Little Big Markets.
At this point in her entrepreneurial journey, Lori was feeling overwhelmed by all of the online marketing options. So, Lori set up a meeting with Kendra to gain clarity about Muffs Merinos’ direction.
During her meeting with Kendra, Lori completed the PoweringOn Digital Assessment.
“Digital Assessment was super helpful and showed I had room to grow. It helped me gain so much insight and highlighted exactly where I need to go and how to get there.”
Re-connected with her why and with a new sense of direction, Lori took action.
“My results changed things dramatically. I was able to confidently choose the next steps to focus on. I went through and revamped my website, making it look more professional, and decided how I wanted to be seen on social media.”
Removing the overwhelm and decision fatigue made pursuing Muff Merino’s growth easier.
“Getting back to my roots helped me create space in my mind and removed some of the unnecessary things off my plate. I gained lots of clarity, and who doesn’t want clarity,” laughs Lori.
Thanks to her work with the PoweringOn Digital Assessment, Lori was back in touch with one of her core whys - working with nature and plants. With this in mind, Kendra connected Lori with Remaker Space, a local sustainability hub.
“With my previous experience working with plant dyes, the team at Remaker Space have encouraged me to re-explore natural dyes and I’m feeling confident again.”
Lori admits that Muffs Merino is currently transitioning to a more sustainable business model. And aren’t we all in a state of transition? Sometimes it’s easy to forget that sustainability is a journey.
“I believe we can work towards sustainability while forgiving ourselves for not always being sustainable. We’re in the age of transition.”
For Lori, this transition looks like continuing to use acid dyes but focusing on lighter and more neutral colours that use less dye. Her choice of wool is New Zealand grown and purchased from boutique stores.
She’s also excited to be currently making a new collection with plant dyes. Remaker Space has got her thinking about recycled yarns and using vintage deadstock in her garments too.
“Like me, some people are almost afraid of being sustainable or going in that direction. The reality is that we’re all trying our best. I want people to know that we’re all on a journey. You can feel completely okay with yourself and where you’re at.”
So what’s next for Lori and Muffs Merino? That question is where Venture Centre has led her to answer.
“I had a meeting with Pascale that agitated my soul in the best way. I had an epiphany that my whole journey has been based on me and what I like making. After sitting with Pascale, I’m now asking and thinking more about, ‘What am I providing the world?’ and ‘How can I help?’.”
Completing the PoweringOn Digital Assessment gave Lori the clarity she needed to move the needle in her business. She also gained the headspace and capacity to focus on the impact her business can have.
We’re excited to see the impact that Lori and Muffs Merino have from here.
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