We were thrilled to spend a little time with Naomi Newirth, founder and owner of Acacia. She shared a bit a bout the business, herself and life as a working momma.
You've been designing swimwear for 11 years, how has the industry changed since you started?
The very first sample I had made was in Bali back in 2006, and prior to that I was sewing my own swimwear. The industry has changed dramatically since I started. When I started Acacia no one thought small coverage bottoms would do well, but with a little persistence, women caught on to the fact that these types of cuts are much more flattering.
By offering more flattering, stylish options (that weren't available before), I like to think that Acacia helped women to feel more beautiful and confident in showing off their curves.
Seeing you with Hunter someone may never know what a tough pregnancy you had. What advice can you offer other working moms struggling with similar issues?
Even though it seems like it’ll never end, it does and the end result is the absolute best thing in the word. It's hard to stay positive when you feel so lousy. My mother was worried I wasn't going to want him after such a difficult pregnancy. I was so miserable and negative, and to be honest, during pregnancy I didn't feel like I wanted him, but of course the second he was out my world changed and I was in love. I feel like advice is hard because nothing anyone said helped me. I guess you just have to surrender to the physical pain and know that it will eventually end.
People probably see your lifestyle as very glamorous... designing and traveling. Is it truly all fun and games?
The day-to-day is mostly computer work which isn’t always fun. I have a wonderful employee who really allows me to focus on what I love- the design and creative side- though at times I even find this difficult to get to with the babes on the hip.
How long from start to finish does a season's production take? How forward thinking do you need to be?
I’m currently waiting on 2018 samples to arrive so we can shoot our campaign and be ready for Miami Swim Week come July. I’ll begin working on 2019 prints soon (even though we’re still only in 2017), I start the design process very early on...about 18 months before it hits the market.
Do you find that motherhood makes you see your company in a different way?
Totally. I now have someone I want to give the world to and provide for. My work and my career isn't just about me anymore.
Hunter is the cutest and motherhood is certainly agreeing with you. How are you juggling it all, and how do you imagine it will change as he gets older?
I’m so fortunate to have work that allows me to be present for Hunter's needs, but it’s definitely a challenge juggling momma-hood and a business. He hasn't taken to the bottle so he’s with me at all times, which means everything runs at a slower pace these days. Nighttime has become my new creative time and also the time to do any catch-up work. As he gets older and more independent he wont be needing mamma every second and it’ll only get easier with him.
Congratulations on the launch of the Acacia exclusive on-line collection! What happened to delay this project by more than 18 months? What more can we expect from this venture?
Life happened and my son, Hunter, happened! I couldn't wrap my head around anything extra while I was pregnant, as I had severe Hyperemesis Gravidarum (extreme nausea vomiting and dehydration 24/7) throughout my entire pregnancy, and then at the end became preeclamptic. I actually found out I was pregnant while I was in NYC shooting our images for e-commerce. I'm not entirely sure on what our ecom will evolve into but you can be sure of more exclusives and the return of old print favorites.
So many working mothers dream of being Mompreneurs in order to spend more time with their family and maintain a healthy income. What advice can you offer moms eager to take control of their career?
Advice I would give anyone dreaming of starting their own business would be to stay true to ones own vision- be original, be realistic and do not give up. Surround yourself with people that inspire you, and be ok with the fact that everything takes a little longer when you're a working momma. Be patient, stay organized and surround yourself with loved ones that help to make your life a little bit easier.
Is traveling still your greatest inspiration for design?
It's one amongst many, however, I'm always able to draw inspiration from my surroundings wherever I may be.
Summer '17 is a fantastic collection, what are some of your favorite pieces?
I love our SILK MOMBASA, SILK KAUPO and am currently living in anything that will fit my XL momma bust which Kokomo is perfection for!
Who do you love to follow on Instagram?
Since I am in the midsts of being a new momma I really enjoy following other inspirational mommas- @courtenyadamo, @innika and @captainandthegypsykid to name a few.
You own one of the most coveted swimwear companies in the world, was this your ultimate goal?
I'm not totally sure what my ultimate goal was at the time of starting Acacia. My simple dream was to create a business I was passionate about, and one that could support the lifestyle I wanted to live. One of my goals was to bring back the small coverage (swimsuit). Everyone doubted me when I began Acacia and insisted we needed full coverage bottoms. I like to think we proved all the doubters wrong.
Shop This Look!
On Naomi Dress - worn as shirt
Special thanks to Maui Maka Photography for the fabulous snaps!
Click the link below to check out all of their beautiful work .