Spotlight on Mom Entrepreneur: Annette Ferber Adelman, founder of Sacs of Life

Sacs of Life The green movement is miles ahead since it first started. Virtually everyone recycles, but how many re-use? If you’ve tried bringing your own bags to the grocery store, you know it’s not always practical to carry enough for a family grocery trip. Sacs of Life are going to change this. Invented by a stylish and eco-friendly mom, Annette Ferber Adelman, it’s a product that will re-invent how we shop. Carrying a giant diaper bag, I know there is always something extra to bring when you are out with kids, so seeing Sacs of Life on HSN immediately sparked my interest. I asked Annette a few questions about her smart invention and the effect it’s had on her life.

How did you come up with the idea for Sacs of Life?

It all started when I realized that as a mother of 4, I could not do my grocery shopping without leaving the store with plastic bags.  No matter  how many reusable bags I brought in with me, I always needed more.  They were so bulky and inconvenient to carry, they were not attractive (therefore I always forgot them in my car) and they just were not user friendly.  I was determined to come up with “systems” – for every kind of shopper – that will help people make that transition of moving away from plastic – with STYLE and EASE.  I started designing – and haven’t slept since then.  Such a consumer void that I am confident I will fill.  We need to be responsible – I wanted to make it easy!

What do you think people will find most useful in this product?

We have 14 different products, and they all suit different purposes.  Each of them were carefully designed to meet the needs of the consumer – but we offer that extra umph!  The idea behind the line is that  each “bag system” starts off compactly –  so easy to carry, store and travel with,  and in some way expands into full size  bags that add practicality and convenience to our busy lives.   In addition, ALL OF OUR BAGS ALWAYS COME WITH AT LEAST ONE OF OUR SIGNATURE “CITY BAGS” folded up and housed in a hidden pocket.   This “city bag”  is a full size stylish shopping bag – that you can whip out at anytime, anywhere for the unexpected shopping trips or any unexpected extras  that have accumulated throughout your busy day.  Our systems are truly one of a kind.

How long did it take you from the moment of conception to production of Sacs of Life?

I started designing the bags March 2008 – and had no patience and wanted production yesterday!  I was so excited and knew I had something so unique in the market that consumers needed!  I started production in February 2009 and haven’t stopped…

What has been the hardest thing so far in being an entrepreneur?

Although I am an attorney and practiced before I had children, once I started a family I became a stay home mom.  The hardest thing so far has been to find a balance and be that hands on mom all the time when the kids are home – be there at pick ups for school and all their activities  and yet try to accomplish what needs to be done for work while the kids are at school.  I have learned how to separate my time with my kids and my time at work.  I have become even more productive now that I have those boundaries.

What do you love about your business?

Sacs of LifeWow, that is the easiest question.  Honestly I am very fortunate that I do not need to have a job in order to raise my family – however – I absolutely have such a passion for this line that has been created.   I am thrilled to offer to consumers a wonderful line of bags……nothing like the “reusable bags” out there…..SACS OF LIFE offers uniquely designed bags that are so stylish, fun to carry, easy to use, price point friendly all while helping to preserve the environment.   What more can I say?

What effect has your work had on your kids and your family overall? How much is your family involved in your work?

Like I said – I have such a passion for these bags that I have created, however would never allow it to interfere with my first love which is being a mother.  I have 4 wonderful children and I have learned to involve them whenever they show interest in the different aspects of the business.  I have a Bella pattern named after one of my kids – she helped me design it, and I have my oldest daughter Maddie who is 15 and has designed a bag that will be coming out in the fall.  My two sons, well they are smart boys and  hopefully they will take on the business aspects one day.

If I asked your kids what kind of Mom you are, what would they say?

Well, I believe that they would say that I am a loving caring mom who is always always there for them.  I also believe that they see a certain passion and drive in me – something that is crucial in life in order to succeed – something that they will hopefully have for whatever they strive to accomplish in their lives.

Do you have a set schedule or a flexible one? How do you decide when to work?

I feel extremely fortunate that I have a very very flexible schedule.  I started this business because I knew I needed to… not because I had to.  Not having that financial pressure, along with  a loving family, a wonderful support system – makes it so easy to be able to really enjoy what I do.

What one piece of advice would you give to moms about to start their own business?

Sacs of LifeI would say that if the kids are young and at home…just wait until they are in school.  When you start something, you need to be in it 100% and if they are truly passionate about their business and the kids are home, I guarantee it will interfere with their mothering which is the most important thing in life.  When you begin a business, your mind goes crazy.  There is the fun part of designing and all, but there are so many other aspects in business that need to be attended to on a daily basis in order to succeed.  Financially, it could be so draining.

I would say, take a lot of notes, observe and have all your things planned out…so that when your kids go to school and you have the time – you can go for it with full strength!  Do it right, go slow.  Things will come in time.  Coming from me that is quite humorous because I absolutely have no patience but have learned through my business that the goods things you are excited about, all come in time….as long as you do it right.

You are passionate about the environment. Can you suggest a few things any mom can do now to become more eco-friendly?

I hate to admit this and it is definitely emabarrassing, but  before I began this business, I was really not so aware and concerned about the environment.  I am all about fashion and I truly was looking at the stylish and convenience aspect first – while the environmental was just an added bonus that needed to be addressed as an important consumer awareness.     I took on my best friend Rachel Levine – who is truly green in every sense of the word.  She has put me into my place and has added such a wonderful  component and who now plays a very important role in SACS OF LIFE.

What busy moms do to become more eco-friendly?   First and simplest thing to start off doing is to use reusable shopping bags.  Eliminating the use of plastic is a great place to start.  Once less bag that winds up in a landfill will make a difference to future generations.  As a parent, it is so important to be a  model to your children.

Where do you see Sacs of Life in 5 years?

I see SACS OF LIFE being a common household name.  One that offers many different options, many different lines, many different styles – so many  innovative ideas – that will continue to make a difference in the environment.  SACS OF LIFE – is determined to always be one step ahead.

Where can our visitors buy Sacs of Life?

Depending on what products – whether grocery shopping systems, travel systems, metro cool bag/purse systems – we sell to many different retailers.  However your best bet is to go online to www.sacsoflife.com and order online.  Or just call the office at 248-863-3148 and we will be able to  supply you with anything you need.   That way you can see all of the different styles we offer and get a list of our retailers in your area.

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