Founder Kathryn Higgins reflects on Motherlove’s growth as she prepares for new beginnings
It's with hearts filled with gratitude that we announce that, nearly thirty years after founding Motherlove Herbal Company in the kitchen of her mountain home, our CEO Kathryn Higgins is moving on to new adventures. In November we celebrated this event with a “New Beginnings” party.
In the years since Kathryn founded Motherlove the company has grown and thrived, with many new products, a new facility, solar power, a foundation, B Corporation certification, and even a new farm - all while staying true to its roots as a family company committed to the earth, supporting the mothers and babies, and the making the highest quality products.
We asked Kathryn to reflect on the origins and growth of Motherlove over the years, and are thrilled to share her memories with you!
I am so surprised at how Motherlove has grown!
Motherlove did not grow out of a big idea or vision or business plan. I was raising children in the Colorado mountains in a simple lifestyle, and my focus was on washing cloth diapers and hanging them on lines across the room because we had no dryer. Our heat was wood and solar. Milking our goats for our milk, yogurt and cheese, planting a garden, gathering herbs for our medicine while the kids played in the woods and meadows. Canning fruit from the farmers market, hauling supplies on a sled when our dirt road was snowed in. Dying wool from plants and knitting crystal bags, baby booties, and hats to sell at local craft fairs, along with herbal wreaths and vinegars, and the herbal products that I created while pregnant and breastfeeding my first daughter, Silencia.
In 1985 I started teaching classes on identifying wild plants for food and medicine on our ten acres. Making an herbal first aid kit to take home or feeding them weed salad (lambsquarter, violets, thistle stalk and dandelion leaves), dandelion muffins, nettle lasagna - when a local store came to a class and asked to carry these products that they heard really worked.
And so Motherlove was born. I had ten of each product with handmade labels in a box in the bedroom. This was really a business! In 1990 I finally got printed labels - and pregnant with Jasmin - and I was ready to take it out of town.
I think Motherlove’s success has to do with right timing - being one of the first companies to make herbal organic products for pregnant and breastfeeding women, and going through the open doors of opportunities.
There’s been a lifetime of changes in the business in the last 30 years. But making the highest quality, effective products and great people to work with has never changed. I’ve had so much help and commitment and love from many people, which has enabled Motherlove to flourish, so that we can give mothers and babies around the world the best start in life.
I am so blessed and grateful to now leave Motherlove in capable hands to care for what I started and take it beyond. Silencia Cox is the seed of Motherlove. It all started while I was pregnant with her and will continue to grow with her vison and leadership as CEO. Jasmin Cox is Motherlove’s production manager. She takes on the challenge of keeping in stock the organic ingredients and products to ensure the world can always have Motherlove.
My family flew in for my New Beginnings party. We had a continuous slide show on the wall with 230 pictures. Pictures of me growing up, trade shows back to 1991, making product in the kitchen at home in the 80’s, our current facility, our 120 acre certified organic farm, Motherlove events - so much history. Silencia and Jasmin made several hundred tins of salve with calendula from our farm for everyone. They found a copy of an original label and logo from 1990, which they copied to put on it.
I cried over all the love letters and we danced.
And now I will take my next step thru the open doors into new beginnings, the next chapter.
To quote what was written on the cake, “Peace Out.”