Today we’d like to introduce you to Haley Lafata.
Hi Haley, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
In 2016 my sister got married, and her and her husband decided to have the wedding at their house. They live on three acres of land, and with the help of my parents they basically turned their dirt lot into a backyard wedding venue. She went with a very boho, eclectic theme, and my mom Dianne (being the décor-obsessed, designer at heart that she is) decided to thrift and purchase all of the décor from the glassware to the candlesticks and beyond, instead of renting. Fast forward two years, my husband and I decided to do the same, and we also turned our three acres into a backyard wedding venue. So, in four years our family built two wedding venues from the ground up, hosted two backyard weddings, and hand-selected every individual piece of décor for both. My mom, sister and I have always been party-planning obsessed and have hosted a number of baby showers, bridal showers, and birthdays using our décor. We’ve even rented it out to friends and family. After years of dreaming about starting a business, we finally decided to dust our stuff off and open up our inventory to the rest of the world.
Prior to becoming a stay-at-home mom and starting Lenny & Lou Collective, I worked for years at a global PR agency. While I started out in a traditional public relations role, I very quickly discovered my passion for social media strategy. I’ve always had a knack for storytelling. I’ve always had a love for words and the way they can make people feel. And because of that, social media content creation just made sense. For years I supported the AT&T Entertainment Group developing content for events including the CMA Awards, Super Bowl LI, and Sundance Film Festival to name a few.
I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle-free, but so far would you say the journey has been a fairly smooth road?
It has most definitely not been a smooth road. In 2019 I gave birth to mine and my husband’s first baby girl. I had all intention of going back to work but at the time just felt like I was being called to transition into a stay-at-home mom. Ultimately, I decided to go back to work in a part-time, work-from-home role, and then a couple of months later COVID hit. Because everything was shutting down, there just wasn’t enough work for me to continue. Creativity (and events) have always been a huge part of my life, so when I was no longer working my corporate job, I definitely felt like I was missing that part of myself. Starting Lenny & Lou Collective has really given me that creative outlet I’ve always needed. If there is one piece of advice I have, it’s stop thinking about it and go do it. You never know where it may lead you. Someone recently told me that starting messy is better than not starting at all…once you get going, the rest will clean itself up.
Great, so let’s talk business. Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
Lenny & Lou Collective is an event décor rental company. We offer a variety of items including gorgeous glassware, vases, candlesticks and votives, signs and easels, servingware, as well as statement pieces like our fan back rattan chair. We are known for our boho and eclectic style but like to keep things classic with some of our more simple signature items. All of our rentals were hand-selected by either myself, my mom, or my sister and are truly special to us, as most of them were used at our very own weddings. We pride ourselves on not only our rentals but also our ability to help clients bring their visions to life through in-person meetings and design consultations. We aren’t trying to become some huge company, our goal is to be the fun, local company you can rely on for hassle-free and affordable rentals. We want to get to know the people we’re renting to and help make their event exactly what they’re hoping for. At the end of the day, Lenny & Lou Collective is really just a way for the three of us to spend time together doing what we love, all while putting some of our seriously cute stuff to use.
Can you talk to us a bit about happiness and what makes you happy?
Gosh, too many things to choose. My two baby girls, Meadow and Lennon. They have taught me more about myself in the last few years than I ever thought possible. They keep me laughing and remind me not to take life too seriously. Planning and organizing. Whether it’s getting ready for an upcoming camping trip or going through my closet, there’s just something I love about starting a new task and staying busy. Also, driving with the windows down and a good country song turned way up. 🙂
- Instagram: @lennyandlouco
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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