Mompreneur no 4: Sarah Toulan
Founder and Creative Director of NINE & BEYOND; The first Egyptian luxury women’s wear brand promoting chic motherhood & pregnancy.
One of the unforgettable moments during pregnancy, is how disapointed you feel when you cannot find anything to wear. You are bloated and your hormones are causing emotional rollercoasters PLUS you have to do the effort to find anything that fits and looks good. I wish NINE & BEYOND existed when I was pregnant. But luckily, this struggle inspired Sarah Toulan to create a brand that offers chic and flexible fashion solutions for moms and moms to be. What is really unique about NINE & BEYOND is that women can wear the same design before, during and after pregnancy.
After graduating from The American University in Cairo, Sarah worked for Microsoft for 6 years then decided to make a career shift. In 2014 she started studying Fashion Design & NINE & BEYOND came to light in 2015 after witnessing a market gap in the fashion industry in Egypt. With her motherhood journey in mind, Sarah also created many solutions to make moms’ life a little easier like creative nursing wear and THE BIRTH BAG: a ready packed bag with a loungewear set & many essentials for a new mom to take to the hospital for delivery.
We asked Sarah about how it all started and what are the key factors that made her achieve her dream. She emphasized the importance of her husband’s support as she always leans on him for advice when she is faced with challenges at work. She always wants to set a good example for her kids. She also feels a sense of responsibility towards pregnant women and new mothers who need an easy & chic wardrobe that would get them through their day happy & comfortable. This gives her the motivation she needs. “I started working on NINE & BEYOND in 2014 and launched its very first collection in 2015. At that point in my life I was going through many changes from pregnancy, having a new baby & a new life and wanting to find my purpose. Going through pregnancy & motherhood myself, I realized that I want to make mothers’ lives better by feeling good about themselves through smart fashion solutions by NINE & BEYOND”, she explained.
Her advice to any mother who wants to start her own business is to do things at her own pace and to never compare her business to others: ‘Don’t let motherhood hold you back but embrace it & make the best out of it’