I’m back with another fun feature from my Women Who Inspire series. Today, I’m so excited to introduce you to Isobel Schofield, the owner and founder of BRYR clogs. I have been a super-fan of BRYR since the beginning when I heard about this small, female-founded, San Francisco based brand that was hand-making clogs to order in unique colors and styles. I so admire Isobel’s commitment to slow fashion (she often has an 8-week wait for her coveted handmade clogs), and the way she’s chosen to create her own rules and run her business on her own terms despite the high demand. I spoke with Isobel about the best career advice she’s received, how she fuels her creativity, and her go-to daily uniform. The full scoop is straight ahead…
Q. The most valuable career advice you’ve ever been given?
“You are the expert of your business” – Nobody knows more about your business than you. Nobody is more invested in your business than you are. Nobody CARES more about your business than you. When I first started Bryr, I would go to other people to ‘give me the answers’. Now I know that though it’s really important to get perspectives from trusted sources, at the end of the day, nobody knows my business better than I do. Trust your gut!
Q. Entrepreneur or leader you admire and why?
I recently had the opportunity to speak with Mandy Cabot, the founder of Dansko. She is a huge inspiration to me because she was on the forefront of creating values-driven businesses with Dansko.
Q. A risk you took that paid off?
I don’t think it’s possible to be a business owner and not take calculated risks all the time. It’s part of the job. But this biggest first risk I took was quitting my stable job as a design director at American Eagle Outfitters and betting on myself. There have been many ups and downs being a business owner, but I’ve never regretted the decision.
Q. The thing you like most about yourself?
I like that I lead with my heart and trust my gut.
Q. Proudest accomplishment?
Growing to become a better mentor and leader, and making choices through the pandemic that prioritized the health and safety of my team above anything else.
Q. How do you fuel your creativity?
The biggest thing that fuels creativity for me is balance, calm and nature. I struggle with anxiety and stress, and I find that when those things get the better of me, my well runs dry. It’s work for me to keep my life balanced, so I make sure that I turn work off on the weekends and evenings. When I’m feeling balanced, my creativity flows and it’s really fun.
Q. Go-to daily uniform?
Q. Actual morning routine?
Most days I wake up at 6am, make myself coffee and my wife tea, and drink it in bed for about 30. Then get up and we drive to the beach and do an ocean cold plunge!!! Then back home, hot breakfast, shower and start work by 10am. I work from 10-6pm most days.
Q. Earlybird or night owl?
Q. How do you recharge when it’s all too much?
My body and brain need nature to recharge. I like to drive out to Pt. Reyes and go for a hike or swim.
Q. One self care tip you follow religiously?
I never work on weekends.
Q. Your #1 go-to easy weeknight meal?
Brown rice with kale, kimchi, and korean-inspired beef. (I can give you the recipe if you want.)
Q. Favorite snack or treat?
Little bee gluten-free chocolate cake.
Q. Favorite or most used app on your phone?
Q. What’s in your handbag right now?
8.6.4. Wallet, a few pens, my iphone, hand-sanitizer, headphones, and dog treats.
Q. Sweatpants or real pants while on Zoom?
Q. Digital or physical planner?
Q. Favorite gift to give?
When my friends go on vacations, I love to order a bottle of wine to their room.
Q. Can’t live without beauty product?
Anything and everything from Botnia.
Q. Guilty pleasure?
Weekend at a fancy hotel or Airbnb.
Q. Your favorite spot to retreat to in your home?
Q. Anything fun coming up that we should know about? (products, collabs, etc.)
We just launched our fresh take on the traditional Scandinavian clog, our worker clog!!!
Thank you so much for the inspiration, Isobel! You can learn more about BRYR and treat yourself to a pair of handmade clogs right here. I’ve been wearing the high heeled Chloe style for years, and currently loving my worker clogs (I ordered in the natural color) which provide just a little bit of height and all the comfort – perfect for working, running errands, and zipping around the city with kids.