Times & Transcript Article
Lili & Maddi Scarf Co. founder Lori MacPhee was featured in the Times & Transcript July 4, 2015.
The article reads:
New family business selling scarves in support of neonatal care
Strong connection between two mothers who’ve lost children led to founding of Lili and Maddi Scarf Co.
The tag line of a new accessories business says it all: Wrap yourself in style and a newborn in care.
Lili and Maddi Scarf Co. is named after owner Lori MacPhee’s two young daughters, Mighty Maddi and Lavish Lili. Its emotional inspiration comes from a child MacPhee lost before he was born. A portion of the profits go to the Neonatal Unit at The Moncton Hospital via Les Ailes du Papillon Foundation, a not-for=profit organization started by a fellow Dieppe woman, Isabelle Bujold. The women met four years ago, in 2011, developing an “immediate connection” after meeting at a support group through a doula.
“I lost a baby around the same time she did; I lost one in January and she lost her little boy – one of her twins – in October,” MacPhee said, from her booth at the Shediac International Flea Market on Friday. She lost her baby before she was full term, so she and he never spend any time in the NICU, but the unit – and how its staff and technology can help other mothers and babies – is still near and dear to her heart.
“I think you always have so much hope that something can help you or your baby,,” she said, becoming emotional, “I just want to be able to give back to another family that maybe were in a similar situation to us.”
MacPhee’s been wondering how to best help other families since she lost her baby. With the help of her husband, Jonathan Cormier, she found the answer through another business venture. The couple own two gift shops, one on Prince Edward Island (where she’s from) , and the other on Iles de la Madeline (where he’s from). They were at a buying show for the stores earlier this year when Cormier suggested she sell scarves, sharing the profit with the Les Ailes du Papillon Foundation. The name means “Butterfly Wings Foundation.” They’d already been sourcing scarves from half-a-dozen suppliers in Toronto, Montreal and Arizona and selling the accessories for seven years, and they’d done well. IT didn’t hurt that scarves – whether embroidered with flowers or printed with lips, flowers or cheetah spots – remained a fashion staple in many women’s closets – including MacPhee’s, “It’s something everyone loves, and probably because I love them myself,” she said. The business-charity is a two-day-a-week operation for the part-time physio-therapist, full-time mom and business owner – “I find I’m doing a lot when (the kids) go to bed,” she laughed. The business began in May at a launch at the Moncton Hospital and sales are already helping Les Ailes du Papillon. Foundation co-founder Bujold said having the support of a local business is huge, especially as the foundation is 100 per cent run and supported by volunteers. “It means a lot to me because I met Lori because of our stories,” she said in an interview on Friday. “we connected that way first. “Through the foundation, women like Lori and others can find a way to deal with their loss, so that means even more that I know where it comes from – the support she’s giving us because of what she went through.” Profits form the scarves will help the foundation reach its 2015 goal of $40,000, which would bring te amount its raised since it was founded in 2011 to $20,000. Half of the annual funds raised go to the CHU Dumont Foundation’s Tree of Hope campaign as Bujold’s dad, and foundation co-founder, died in 2012 after a long battle with cancer. The other half goes to the neonatal unit. “The Moncton Hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is grateful for donations from Les Ailes du Papillon Foundation, as they certainly benefit our infant patients and their families,” Claire LeBlanc, director, Women and Children’s Health, said in an email to the Times & Transcript. “Donations help buy much needed equipment , which enhance patient care and family experience.” As a new business, Lili and Maddi doesn’t yet have a brick-and-mortar shop but there are still many places to purchase a scarf.
Scarves can be bought this weekend at Shediac International Flea Market. MacPhee is a regular vendor at the Bouctouche Market on Saturday mornings, as well as Amherst and Memramcook markets on select dates later this summer. Scarves can be bought online at lilimaddi.com.
Article by Ginabeth Roberts.