The more things change, the more things stay the same. That's how I felt after being thrown back into the youth volleyball world, about 25 years after my own youth volleyball career had moved on. And that's also where the idea to launch Live Dreams came from.
As with any startup, I felt I had an opportunity to fill a void in the world of volleyball apparel: people who love the game of volleyball (players, coaches, fans) are in the market for high quality gear that is cute, comfy and clued-in. I'll elaborate...
We now live in a world of Little Giraffe luxe blankets and Jellycat stuffed animals. These. Things. Are. So. Soft. And we've come to expect the same thing from our clothes. The days of having to wear in a t-shirt over the course of years and dozens of washes is behind us, we can get that already worn in feeling right off the shelf. I'm not afraid to say crusty shirts should be a thing of the past. Just like bubble knee pads.
Printing the words "volleyball" and "mom" on a shirt sells. It really really sells. Because there's a super strong and proud community of volleyball moms out there — I love that. I respect that. I will probably wear one of those shirts someday when my daughter starts to play. But I don't want to be that. I want to be clued-in. I want the volleyball grandma to ask her granddaughter what "Left Right Left" means. Or the guy passing by our booth to ask me if the Wanna Pepper? shirt is a nod to Dr. Pepper. Those moments actually happened and they made my day. Because I also know that when my niece wore her Left Right Left shirt to the mall, a random girl passing by told her, "cool shirt," and they instantly could identify one another as volleyball family. Our brand of people name their dogs Pepper because, to us, volleyball is family. There's a language our volleyball family speaks that only our volleyball family understands. That language is the result of a lot of hard work and sacrifice. I say we sport it proudly.
The lives of student-athletes are crazy busy. Your practices and games are sandwiched in between about 12 other daily activities. It's practical to wear something to the gym that you can also feel comfortable wearing to school beforehand or a birthday party afterward. But I've seen you volleyball families. You have style. Like, even at 8 a.m. in a gym on a Saturday morning, you have style. So it can't just be any old t-shirt. Which is why I'm constantly watching and studying my style crushes in order to bring you the latest trends that make sense both in and out of the gym. Let's keep reminding the world that #sportyisbeautiful.
Those three things, in equal parts, are what make Live Dreams different. And while I'm extremely proud of the response we've gotten in our limited exposure thus far, we're ready to bring our products to more volleyball families. If you (or someone you know at your local sports facility) are interested in learning more about our wholesale program — I'd love to hear from you! Please don't hesitate to reach out. We could be the perfect team.
Beth (Heimann) Jenkins
Owner & Designer