Sisters Shannon Caserta and Sarah Lemoine, owners and designers of Well Dressed Wolf (www.welldressedwolf.com), combine a fairy tale with playful designs to create a children's fashion label loved by kids and parents.
"How many times had we read about the Big Bad Wolf and the wolf in sheep's clothing?" Lemoine says. "And what did all of these terrible wolves have in common? They used their clothing as a way to trick and deceive. Our sweet wolf has risen above his predecessors and urges children to remain true to themselves in all aspects of their lives — including the way they dress."
The concept for the misunderstood, stereotyped creature clicked with many children, Lemoine says. Both mothers, Caserta and Lemoine have a total of 11 kids between them. The Louisiana natives credit their children and home state as inspiration for their business, which they launched in 2012.
"We put a background in graphic design and our expertise in having and dressing children to work for us," Lemoine says.
"Being from Louisiana (and raising many children here), fairy tales and magic are part of everyday life," Caserta said. "It made sense to honor that."
The kids help out with designs. "Shannon's oldest is 13," Lemoine says. "Her name is Cameron. She sees the trends that are coming."
With a strong message and now a strong following, Well Dressed Wolf is grabbing national attention: More than 82,000 people are fans of the brand's Facebook page.
"We have actually found real friends — and an amazing part-time employee — that we've never actually met through our social media interactions," Lemoine says.
The website hosts sales almost every Thursday, which are announced on Facebook and Instagram.
"Items sell out very quickly, so it pays to be a Facebook fan," Caserta says.
The fashion line is whimsical but simple. The Daydream line consists of ethereal, lightweight frocks, including a playful take on a vintage-style smocked dress with a soft tulle overlay.
"We love simple prints, soothing color palettes, fine fabrics and graphically pleasing designs — with a hint of something unexpected or different," Caserta says. "Our goal is for the children themselves to be the focal point, letting their unique personalities infuse the pretty clothes with life."
"Pieces are innocent and vintage-inspired, with a very nostalgic, handcrafted feel," Caserta says.
Lemoine feels humbled when she receives thousands of photos of happy children wearing Well Dressed Wolf. She is grateful so many parents trust her brand to provide the backdrop for special events.
"In general, I think parents connect with children's clothing on a deeper level," Caserta says. "Dresses are so much more than fabric and lace. They represent holidays and memories and childhood."