I grew up in South Louisiana, and for as long as I can remember, sewing was an everyday occurrence in my childhood home. My great grandmother, “Mama O’Pry”, was famous for her beautiful quilts. Today, our family cherishes her quilts. Every visit to her home as a child, I looked forward to cutting quilt squares for her. My Grandma’s sewing machine was a staple to her dining room table. My Mom and aunts still talk about all the dresses that my grandmother and great grandmother made for them. As a matter of a fact, you can still find scraps from those clothes in the quilts that remain from Mama O’Pry. I cannot read a clothing pattern to save my life, but I can hand stitch a quilt border with the best of them!
In 1998, my husband Corey received a job offer in Dallas. We packed up a U-Haul truck and moved into our first home in the small town of Frisco, Texas. In 1998, Frisco was still acres and acres of farmland. There was one grocery store, and Preston was a 2-lane road. With no family around to fill our weekends, we became home improvement experts! Our family room windows were my first big project. I went down to Wal-Mart, all the way in Plano, and purchased a brother sewing machine for 50 bucks. Little did I know this machine would eventually be the start of La Belle Designs. Once I lovingly finished my family room drapes I had a friend ask me to make drapes for her family room. From then on, I was “The Friend” called when they needed a little something sewn up.
In 2003, we outgrew our starter home and moved to our home now; with room enough for two kids, an office, and a sewing room of my very own! I had this crazy idea to use my new house to start a portfolio for a new business. I named it La Belle Designs, a take of my daughters’ names (Lilly Ann for the La) (Isabella for the Bell). I immediately started learning more about window coverings; reading everything I could find about workroom standards, hardware, proper installation and fabric.
I learned many lessons along the way; like never leave a finished project alone with a 2-year-old, her best friend, and a bag of Cheetos! Never hire your husband as an installer, had to fire him… Now I look back on this 15-year journey, and La Belle Designs Custom Window Treatments has changed and grown in many ways, but is still a small business that allows me to be flexible for my family. I get to spend my days selecting fabric, meeting with customers, and working on custom designs. I could not imagine any better job!