Mommy Chick of the Month: Whitney from Sonnet James

mommy chick, baby chick, sonnet james

Mommy Chick of the Month: Whitney from Sonnet James

Sonnet James has been a company that I have loved for years. It’s known as a brand that creates play dresses for the playful mom. But even the non-moms out there have to agree, these outfits are too cute to pass up. Whitney Lundeen is the own and creator of Sonnet James. Just from following her on social media, she seems like the kind of woman you hope to be friends with because you know that you will be inspired, laugh a lot and definitely play. We are honored to have her as our Mommy Chick of the Month for May. As a mompreneur that we love and admire, we think you will leave this interview inspired too.

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Nina: Hi, Whitney! We love frolicking around in your play dresses! Tell us a little about how Sonnet James got started.

Whitney: Sonnet James started as a personal project. The idea was created in a very transformative time in my life. It came to me while I was in therapy. I was going back to some really hard points in my childhood, and the therapist asked me to do an art project that would kind of get me back to that place that I was as a child. The thought was that I wanted to make a dress that would have helped my mother to play with me as a child, something that would remind her to do that with me. So that was when the idea was born.

I always get asked where the name Sonnet James came from–I was in a place where I didn’t think I was probably going to have any more children. Both of my boys were surprise genders; I waited until I had them to find out if they were male or female. I had a boy and a girl name picked out and James was the girl name I had picked out if Satchel (my first boy) would have been a girl, and Sonnet was the girl name for Eero (my second boy). So I kind of put them together, and it was as if it was the daughter that I never had.

N: That story is so touching. To be able to take a difficult time in your life and create something beautiful for all mothers to enjoy. I love that. And the name! How do you balance being a full-time small business owner and mama of two boys?

W: It is chaos, but I actually think it makes me more alive, and I feel like it makes me a better mother. I feel like a lot of times I wish I didn’t work, and could just be at home, and just be 100% focused on them all the time. Honestly, I think that by keeping that creative side of me going and flowing it brings a whole new dimension to me that is really important to my relationships, especially with my children.

It takes practice to turn my brain off from work, but usually things can wait. I find that especially after huge deadlines, I owe it to my boys to unplug a little bit. I can usually tell when I need to do this when my little one starts to get clingy or the older one starts to tease his brother. I watch for little clues that they need more of my attention. On those days, I just say I’m not working today. I am just going to be a mom. That’s a huge plus to having my own business.

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N: We love that your dresses help us to feel comfy, cute, and totally unrestricted at the same time.  How did you manage to strike this balance in your designs?

W: I wanted something like a one-stop kind of outfit for moms. I just think that there is something so special about a dress; something so feminine and romantic, and I feel that as mothers we really need to tap into that romantic side of us to get through the day.

There are a couple of unique factors about Sonnet James dresses.

First is the material. After I had my boys, I continually gravitated to my old maternity clothes (even after pregnancy) because they were so soft and stretchy. Even though I wasn’t crazy about the look of these maternity shirts and dresses, the feel of the fabric was perfect. So I used that fabric as the base of the designs–a modal and rayon/spandex blend. This was a critical find because these dresses had to be soft and stretchy, but also machine washable. They had to be soft and cozy and virtually indestructible–and this modal and rayon/spandex blend was just right.

Second are the lines. I knew that the best lines were going to be simple, modern lines that were clean and crisp. The dresses would have to be something that could stand out on their own at the office or be worn three days in a row to soccer practice! I think the magic came from this pairing of a casual fabric with simple, flattering silhouettes. These dresses really are perfect for transitioning from work to the park.

N: It’s obvious that you put in a lot of time and thought into each piece. They are perfection and we love to wear them!

As you know, moms are short on time in the morning, do you have any quick beauty tricks to share with our mommy chicks?

W: Exercise. Let your hair air dry or use dry shampoo. I love Stila’s convertible color in poppy for cheeks and lips.

N: How do you like to unwind after a long week?

W: If I don’t have the boys I literally lay in bed and never get out. I’ll watch movies or reruns of Law and Order: SVU. Or read books in bed. I also keep a secret stash of chocolate in my room for when I finally get some time alone. Alone time is really important to me and I need a lot of it (introvert!).  My bed is my favorite place on the entire planet. I mean if I could have all my meals brought to me in bed, if I could work in bed, it would be wonderful, I love my bed.

If I do have the boys we play! A hike or go to the museum, we clean and wash the car, pizza and a movie at home!

N: What is your bedtime routine?

W: Yes yes yes, love the bedtime routine. I love to take a bath to calm me down. I wash my face with a warm wash cloth. I spray some witch hazel as a toner. I use Jan Marini’s bioclear (it’s my favorite) and then I make sure I am wearing super comfy pajamas. I am a huge fan of matching sets!

Mommy chick, baby chick, sonnet james

N: What’s the greatest lesson (or lessons) that motherhood has taught you?

W: Motherhood connected me to humanity in a way I never expected. It’s the best thing that has ever happened to me. When people would irritate me I couldn’t help but think “that’s someone’s baby”, just like Satchel is my baby and that person has a mom somewhere who sees all the good in him or her just like I see it in my son.

N: What makes you feel beautiful?

W: Hawaii and being happy.

N: As a mama of two, what’s a piece of advice that you wish you would have known and would like to share with expecting moms and/or brand new mothers?

W: This advice I received from a friend: never panic and always light up when your kids walk in the room.

N: What are your secrets to being a happy mommy?

W: Alone time. Being grateful. Perspective.

N: Do you have any rituals that help you to feel centered?

W: Exercise is incredibly important for my mental health, so I try and make that a top priority–and I try and do it with friends as much as possible. Lately, I have been doing sprints with a friend (gotta sweat) and unwinding by taking yin yoga classes.

N: How did your mother inspire you?

W: My mother is kind. She has a beautiful heart, and that has always inspired me.

mommy chick, baby chick, sonnet james

N: What are your greatest hopes for our children’s’ future—the next generation?

W: That they understand that they have a huge responsibility to understand and fight discrimination, sexism, and racism of all kinds. To hold firmly in their hearts that women are equal to men. Also, that they understand that women are not objects. We are all brothers and sisters.

N: What are your greatest hopes for women and mothers everywhere?

W: That we get respected and valued for who we are as human beings and what we contribute as women. That women and mothers will stop being abused.

Thank you, Whitney. We loved getting to know you a little bit more and sharing your insights. Keep doing what you’re doing, girl! We’ll be following along. 🙂

About the Author /

Nina is The Baby Chick® & CEO of Baby Chick®. She is a baby planner, birth doula, postpartum doula, childbirth educator, newborn care specialist, and a mother. With over eight years of experience, she has supported hundreds of families during their pregnancies, births, and postpartum journeys.

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Even though things may be more difficult now to offer help, still try to be the friend you wished you had when your babies were newborns to your friends and loved ones. ❤️ Things you can do:⁠
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You're My Baby Forever, But My Newborn for Now⁠ You're My Baby Forever, But My Newborn for Now⁠ 💕⁠
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When I had my first baby, everyone told me to enjoy the newborn stage because it goes fast, and I would miss it. But I was so exhausted and overwhelmed I didn’t believe them. 😴 While I was living through it, it felt like it took forever!⁠
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If you are there now or about to enter this stage, it’s a yummy, delicious, snuggly stage. But for me, it has always been one of the harder ones, every time I go through it. So I see and feel you, mama! It’s physically, emotionally, and mentally exhausting. Hold tight, though, because it doesn’t last forever.⁠
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Daddy Chronicles: Breastfeeding 💙⁠ by @chroni Daddy Chronicles: Breastfeeding 💙⁠
by @chroniclesofdaddy⁠
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I've been asked so many questions by men about fatherhood. So I figured I'd drop some knowledge on my fellow Dads and soon-to-be-Dads. Here's what it looks like for the first few weeks or months after your child is born. Yup. If mom breastfeeds they pretty much are tucked like this and at times you'll wonder "what is there for me to do?" Here are my top 5 tips for any Dad after your child is born.⁠
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1️⃣ For night feedings. When mom wakes up in the middle of the night, you get up and ask if she needs any help or water. The truth is most of the time she will say no but just the fact that you offered will go far.⁠
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2️⃣ Ask mom if she can pump and then pick 1 feeding that you will always do. Mom will take on almost everything and will burn herself out if you let her. At times you may have to force her to rest without worrying about the baby. This is an easy way to do that without a fight.⁠
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3️⃣ Don't put a time limit on how long mom breastfeeds the baby. It's not just about feeding your child it's about them bonding as well. I know everyone has a different length of time they will breastfeed and as a Dad, it's hard to fully understand. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT try and rush this process. It's not our place and it's not safe. You will open yourself up to a fight you can't win.⁠
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4️⃣ Be patient. I know as a Dad the first few weeks we are equally excited and yet not as important. Your time will come faster than you know. Babies grow fast and the stronger and bigger they get the more Daddy Time will be coming your way.⁠
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5️⃣ Paternity leave! If you have it TAKE IT. The early stages of a child's life are not just for moms to enjoy. I know as men making the money especially after having a baby it's hard, but trust me. You can always make money but there are no instant replays in life. It doesn't make you more of a man to not take the leave. It's equally as important that you as a Dad get to be a part of the early development of your child. ⁠
If someone needs this info tag them ❤️⁠
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Absolutely love these tips from @chroniclesofdaddy. 🙌
7 Postpartum Yoga Poses That Strengthen Your Body 7 Postpartum Yoga Poses That Strengthen Your Body After Baby 🧘‍♀️⁠
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The postpartum period, or period of recovery that takes place after a mother gives birth, is an important time for mothers to take care of themselves. 🥰 Typically, if you’re less than 6 weeks postpartum you don’t want to put any pressure on your core muscles. Also, your body’s levels of relaxin, the hormone that loosens joints to prepare for childbirth, is elevated for 3-6 months after childbirth, and longer if you are breastfeeding. All this means is: take these postpartum yoga poses slowly and stretch yourself gently. No gymnastics here or pushing beyond what is comfortable.⁠
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Remember, every mama’s body is different, so listen to how you feel and seek advice from a medical professional if you have questions about how and when to begin your personal exercise plan. Note: Try to do the following yoga poses in the order they are listed. {Click 🔗 in bio to see the 7 yoga poses to strengthen your body after baby!⁠}⁠
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Article by: @kristen_vhmiddleton⁠
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