¡Amig@s! Today I’m super excited to introduce you to Katherine (Kathy) de Lima, the creator of Chévere Apparel, a line of children’s clothes in Spanish. She has agreed to chat with us about her company and has graciously agreed to a giveaway for a chance to win one of her t-shirts (of your choice!). So, be sure to click on the link to the Rafflecopter website at the end of today’s interview (part one) for your chance to WIN (Sorry, but only for Domestic readers)! The giveaway will run from today (Wednesday) until this Friday at 12am.
And, be sure to check out Chévere Apparel’s store here!
Let’s start with you, Katherine. Can you tell my readers a bit about yourself, your background, where you’re from? ¡Hola! My name is Kathy and I was born in New York City but moved to Massachusetts at around the age of 8 and I’ve been here ever since. My family is from Colombia and I grew up in a bilingual and bicultural home. I’m married and have four children, ages 16, 7, 2 and 10 months. I’m a middle school Spanish teacher, so Spanish is basically my life! I live, breath, eat and now wear Spanish!
¡La ropa! (The clothes)
How was the clothing line “Chevere Apparel” born? Why children’s clothes? Why in Spanish?
Chévere Apparel was born last fall after I saw that there was almost nothing out there that catered to the Hispanic population – especially children. With the Hispanic population being so large this surprised me. I thought a children’s line would be perfect because I have four of my own and this is the age group that is learning to speak the language and what a great way to encourage their love for the language and culture than to have them wear it proudly!
How did you decide on the name?
In Colombia chévere is the word for cool – it is used all of the time, especially in my house. I also have a teacher blog by this name so I thought it would be a perfect fit – chévere apparel – cool bilingual tees for cool little kids!
What is the mission, or vision, behind your company?
My mission is to promote bilingualism and biculturalism through creative and fun tees that children (and soon adults!) can wear. I want kids to grow up feeling proud of their heritage and this is just one way to express that. Growing up, there was a patch of time I remember not wanting to speak a different language or be a part of a different culture. I think that helping kids at a really young age embrace where they come from is a really important piece in forming their identities as Hispanics.
Can you walk us through your creative process of planning for, designing, printing, and selling your clothes?
I first try to think of designs and/or phrases that I think both kids and parents can relate to- from simple phrases like “te amo” to fun lines from our favorite childhood lullabies (coming soon!). I spend a lot of time thinking about these and asking people their opinion of what they would put on their kids. I then either create the design myself on my computer, or if it involves something artsy I hire an artist to help me. The designs are then sent to my printer in California who creates the screens and does the printing for me. All promoting is currently done on Instagram (@chevere_apparel).
What future plans do you have for “Chevere Apparel?” (What new fun words will you print next?!)
I hope to see Chévere Apparel grow and be known as a place where you can find bilingual tees for your little ones. Designs are being released seasonally and very soon I will have something for soccer lovers and dancing machines! I’ve also been thinking about some of our favorite Hispanic lullabies and sayings so stay tuned for that too! And if you have a suggestion – please let me know! I’m open to new ideas and it might win you a tee!
Friends! Click on the Rafflecopter link here to enter this “chévere” giveaway to win a t-shirt of your choice for your bilingual babe! And, we’ll be back Friday for part two of my interview with Kathy and to announce the winner of the giveaway.