BABE #67: ERYN EDDY ERICKSON,
Founder + CEO @ So Worth Loving
There are few things we love more than a woman-owned company with an empowering mission and message. Enter Eryn, an Atlanta-based Babe who owns and runs So Worth Loving, a brick and mortar apparel and lifestyle shop created to promote self-love and self-worth. As she originally planned to pursue a career in music, SWL started as happy accident for Eryn with just a stencil and some spray paint, and has since grown into a global movement and community that continues to change the world. Thanks for letting us pick your brain, Eryn! You're most certainly a Babe.
Hometown: Clarkesville, Georgia
Current city: Atlanta, Georgia
Alma mater: N/A
Hustle: Founder + CEO @ So Worth Loving
Babe you admire and why?
Dana Spinola of fab’rik. I admire her faith, her spirit, her tenacity, and how she’s remained so humble in the process of going from one store to over forty locations. She truly has the most beautiful heart and passion to serve others. I am thankful to have her as a mentor and a friend.
How do you spend your free time?
If I’m in the city, you can find me walking the beltline with my pup, Sprocket, during the day and grabbing tacos and margs with my friends at night. Whenever I get a chance to get out of the city, I love escaping to my parent’s property in North Georgia to spend time with family and catch a break from the hustle and bustle of business.
Must-have item in your purse?
My peppermint essential oil. It helps with headaches, relaxation, and it just smells so good! My team is always teasing me about whipping it out every time someone isn’t feeling great.
Favorite beauty item?
Red lipstick. Always.
Pizza or tacos?
Tacos for sure. If I’m being completely honest, I’ve had Mexican for almost every meal this week and I’m not ashamed about it.
Tell us about your hustle:
I am the Founder and CEO at So Worth Loving, a lifestyle company based in Atlanta that promotes self-worth and self-love through apparel and storytelling.
Can you further explain the start of SWL (stencils, mailboxes and all?)
I was still heavily involved with my music when So Worth Loving began. I was looking for a way to connect to listeners and wanted to come up with a phrase they might relate with. The words “So Worth Loving” came to mind over and over, and I knew I had to use it. I posted my home address online (tip: never do that!) and said that if anyone sent me a shirt, I'd spray paint the words “So Worth Loving” on it and send it back. I was shocked at the response. I received hundreds of shirts along with countless stories from people who really resonated with the message. Whether they had gone through abuse, loss, depression, eating disorders, or general anxiety, these hearts needed to be reminded they were worthy of love. With the amount of people longing for this message, I knew it had to be something bigger. Thus, So Worth Loving began.
What does your typical workday look like?
A typical workday is full of meetings, trying to get new ideas off the ground, and wearing a whole lot of hats. Most people don’t realize how small our team really is. There are four of us including myself, with about three interns rotating in and out each season. Most of our team is part time, so Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays are when the office is fullest. We start the week with a collective staff meeting, reviewing all of our main goals for the week, and then break off into our individual tasks in order to complete them. Most of our time is spent brainstorming ideas for events to connect our community, creating and ordering products, communicating with contributors and writing content for the blog, and processing and fulfilling orders. You wear a lot of hats with a team so small but it makes every day different and that much more exciting!
What inspired the words “So Worth Loving” for you? I never know how to describe where So Worth Loving came from other than that it came to me in a whisper. The words just kind of entered my heart suddenly and I knew it was what I had been looking for. So worth loving is powerful because it’s more than just being worthy of love. It’s saying “I see your mess. I see your past. I see all the bruises and brokenness in your life, and I love you anyway. You are so worth loving. Every single bit of you.”
What is your community like?
Our community is such a special one. They are vulnerable, honest, and so incredibly encouraging of one another. They understand the importance of making people feel fully seen and fully loved, because so many of them have longed for that themselves. Our community is why So Worth Loving exists. They are the heart and the reason behind what we do.
Have you always had an entrepreneurial spirit? Where do you think that comes from?
Yes, absolutely. I have always loved coming up with new ideas and passion projects. One time while I was traveling, I started making little felt animals just for fun and to have something to do. Once I had built up a collection, I didn’t want to throw them out or take them to a thrift store, so I decided to have people adopt them. Thus Adopt My Felt was born. People would visit my Adopt A Felt Tumblr page to claim their new pet and I would ship it to them. Each one of my furry little friends found a new home! I have always loved anything that allows me to be creative, and my parents running their own furniture business growing up is probably one of the things that encouraged me to start a business of my own.
What are some standout stories + experiences from your SWL journey? (I know there are millions!)
One of my all time favorite SWL stories comes from my friend Melissa. She lives in New Jersey and was the first ever to send in her story to So Worth Loving. It was full of heartbreak and pain followed by so much beauty and restoration. Reading Melissa’s story encouraged me that people need to hear the So Worth Loving message. We have remained in contact and become good friends. Melissa even volunteers for us now by running our social media and helping to love on the #swlfamily online. It is so cool to see the full circle. Someone who was deeply touched by the So Worth Loving message is now using it as an outlet to love on and encourage others. I just love that.
What is your office culture/environment like?
I would describe our office as a family. When you are a small crew and you spend most of your time together, how can you not become the closest of friends? Our team is vulnerable, honest, and the most fun. We are laid back and like to have a good time, but also understand the value of hard work. I love that our days are filled with heart to hearts and sharing life stories, but that we never lose sight of the drive and determination to get the job done.
What is one of the biggest obstacles you’ve faced in your work? How’d you overcome it?
Logistics and numbers have always been the hardest part of the job for me. I thrive in creativity and connectivity, but when it comes to the logistics side of things, it leaves me feeling drained and burnt out. I’ve found that surrounding myself with a team that has strengths in my areas of weakness helps to keep me on track. I’ve learned to delegate and ask help when I need it, and people are almost always willing.
What motivates you every day?
Our community is hands down the biggest motivation. Watching walls come down as people share their stories and connect with one another is unlike anything I’ve ever seen. It’s easy to feel burnt out when you get caught up in the logistics and numbers, but then when you sit down and meet with someone face-to-face or receive a letter from a SWL family member miles away, you remember why it is you do what you do. Our community is why we began and it’s the heart behind everything that we do.
In partnership with: StringStrangStrung
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