Adelisa & Co - Meet the Makers
Today’s story begins in a small church in Vancouver, British Columbia. Two young girls met for the first time and began a life long friendship that would lead to them creating a beautiful company. A company that provides jobs for those in need in Nicaragua and darling shoes for you and your little ones. The shop I am excitedly sharing with you all today is Adelisa & Co. Before I get into how the company was started I want to introduce the two wonder women behind the scenes, Rachel and Allison.
Allison is a mother of three beautiful children (Annalise (6), Lucas (4), and Nathan (2)) and loving wife to her husband Kyle. She was raised in Vancouver, B.C., but 9 years ago she and her husband made the big move to Nicaragua to work as missionaries. There they have been raising their three children and feel blessed to call such a beautiful country home.
The other half, Rachel, is happily married to her husband Dan and has been blessed with two children, Adele (5) and Eleanor (3). We She was raised in Nova Scotia, but once she turned 18 moved to Vancouver where she met her best friend and business partner. Now her little family is living in Southwestern Ontario, and in their spare time completing renovations on a 1926 one room school house. Once they finish this school house they hope to fix up a 1973 Winnebago and take a road trip down to California.
I asked them to tell me about themselves and they each created a list of little fun facts about themselves.
1. I drink about 6, half cups of coffee a day (it drives my husband crazy haha).
2. I’m usually a super chill and friendly person, but boardgames bring out the worst in me.
3. My wardrobe is 90% dresses.
4. I love reading. I average a book a week.
5. My alternate dream job would be being a librarian (living on the wild side, I know 😂).
1. I love carbs and Coke Zero.
2. I am literally ALWAYS planning a trip somewhere, 98% of which I never take. I look up flights to different locations at least once a day!
3. I’m a total introvert and struggle to make small talk.
4. My shopping weakness is thrift stores. If I have any sort of free time, you’ll find me thrifting.
Out of the two Rachel has always been the one with an entrepreneurial spirit. At the age of 8 she began to sell wildflowers at the corner store and as she got older she opened a couple different businesses as hobbies. Ultimately this helped her gain enough courage and knowledge to take the leap of faith and start Adelisa & Co. Allison on the other hand, despised business class in high school and went on to earn a degree in History and English Literature. Allison said, “So needless to say, I’m constantly amazed at how God used so many things in my life to lead me to where I am today. Running a small business is something I thought I would never enjoy, let alone be brave enough to do. I absolutely love doing it and enjoy being challenged in a new area.”
Now about the creation of Adelisa & Co. Shortly after Allison got married and moved to Nicaragua Rachel, the traveling addict, convinced her husband to take a vacation to visit them. Rachel and her husband quickly fell in love with the place and were visiting Allison and her husband multiple times a year. After they had their first children they became even closer, and the trips became longer. On these long vacations they would go to the local artisans markets and stare in awe at all the talented craftsman and the beautiful work they would create by hand. Rachel, with her entrepreneurial spirit immediately thought of the endless possibilities of sharing these high quality handcrafted products with the world. So they started forming the idea of working directly with these local artisans, who used high quality local materials, to create designs that they could share with mothers all around the world. The more they discussed the possibility of the company the more excited they became. They came up with the name “Adelisa” as it was a combination of the their little ones names and also a tribute to them, their first born daughters, who strengthened their friendship which led to the creation of this company. Their first artisans were a young cobbler named Melvin, and a family who had been making hammocks for our 65 years. Now, Marvin is their head cobbler and they have added a multitude of talented craftsmen to their team.
When I asked them what the biggest challenge they face as full time mothers and shop owners, they both agreed upon the same answer. An answer I have received from multiple shop owning mothers, the challenge of finding the perfect balance of work and family. They both have been working on a system to help find a balance. In the mornings they try to complete as much as they can so they can “unplug” by the time their children come home. They also said, “working with someone at the same stage in life helps a lot, as we totally get each other and when we have days where the “to-do list” isn’t getting done, usually the other person is able to step in and help!”
Not only do they offer a variety of shoe styles for men, women, and children, they also offer handmade macrame hammocks. When asked what their favorite product they offered was they both chose the Paseo boots. The reasoning for it they said was, “when we first started out, we sold sandals and all were traditional Nicaragua designs. Our Paseo boot was the first design we tried out on our own and at the same time, it was something totally new for our cobbler. No other artisans in Nicaragua made this type of boot at the time so we were all so excited and proud when he handed us the first sample. It quickly became one of our best-selling shoes and gave us all the confidence to try new things.”
My Addie just received her own first pair of Paseos from Adelisa & Co, and her reaction to them has been amazing. I have never been able to wear any hard soled shoes on her that came up near her ankles, with winter coming and sandal season disappearing quickly I was on the lookout for some sort of shoe for her to wear. When we got our Paseos in the mail, I hurried home and opened the package on the kitchen island. Addie saw the darling little boots and immediately began begging for them on. I put them on her and waited for the usual fit to begin where she would try to rip them off. I waited... and waited... and no fit came. She was happily stomping around our kitchen and living room showing off her new boots. I put her jacket on and she ran outside and continued her giddy stomping. We have worn these boots on her everyday since we have received them and, honestly, I don’t think either of us could be happier with them. The funniest part of the whole story is when my husband came home and saw Addies boots. He immediately asked if they made men shoes and, if they did, if had I ordered him any yet. Well guess what... they do! I am impatiently awaiting their next release of the men’s and women’s Paseos so our whole family will proudly be supporting Adelisa & Co.
I hope you enjoyed getting to know the mamas and the story behind this beautiful company as much as I have. Their boots are out-of-this-world quality, and I highly recommend them to any mama on the lookout for new boots for their little ones. If you have any questions in regards to Addies Paseos I will happily answer them for you, just leave a comment or send me a message.
P.S. All the photos of Addie were taken on a freezing fun filled day at the pumpkin patch, and trust me it would NOT have been fun filled if it hadn’t been for Addies Paseos! They kept her feet very warm and looked extra adorable with a pair of warm socks styled along with them.