Kourtney Hiebert saw a gap in the market in Brooks, Alberta when she was pregnant with her first child. She saw an opportunity to open a maternity store and with encouragement from other local business owners, along with the Business Beautification Loan from Community Futures Chinook, Hiebert opened Mom Life Maternity on Oct. 1, 2021.
The building she moved her business into was an open space, so the entrepreneur used the Beautification Loan to add a fresh coat of paint, storage, a diaper changing and nursing area, change rooms, fixtures, and garment racks.
“This loan was instrumental in getting started. My goal was to create a space that was open and inviting and you have to make it look nice to do that. I had a vision of how I wanted everything to look and feel. With the loan and help from family members and friends, we made that vision come to life,” says Hiebert.
Hiebert hopes that her store helps mothers feel they have a community to come to when they feel they need support. Along with having maternity retail and essential products available, Mom Life Maternity hosts educational health events that invite mothers within and around the area to attend and connect.
“We’re striving to be the area's one stop shop for moms at all stages of their motherhood journey. We’ve evolved since opening. We started with primarily maternity clothing, now we are carrying clothes for children up to five years old, toys, books, wellness essentials, and much more,” says Hiebert. “We also have items for grandmothers and aunts.”
The maternity store offers new retail items and also has a small consignment section that includes maternity clothing, baby gear, like strollers and jumpers, and baby clothing up to five years old.
“I don’t know how you would even get started as a young, first-time business owner without support from places like Community Futures. I appreciated the Beautification Loan and the council and advice that came along with it,” says Hiebert. “I’ve also met so many other business owners who’ve given advice and mentored me. The support makes you feel more welcome to the business community.”
Mom Life Maternity is developing their website but can be found online for now at https://www.instagram.com/momlifematernitybaby/.