Can you say yum? Meet chic, creative yumster and entrepreneur Dylan Lauren, who is using her Willy Wonka style to give back through Dylan’s Candy BarN. Welcome to The Fit List, Dylan!
1. What inspired you to found Dylan’s?
I’ve always loved candy but felt there wasn’t a fun place to get all the amazing products I had seen. And I also was so inspired by Disney Land and Willy Wonka and hoped to create a retail-tainment fantasy place like those to showcase candy and allow customers to enjoy a sweeter life.
2. We live in a world of no carbs, green juice and kale. Where does candy fit in?
Everything in moderation. Work hard, play hard, work out and eat well but this allows some room for treating yourself. And, by the way, we offer allergen-free, sugar-free candies. But, to be honest, everyone has to allow for some enjoyment in their life and not deprive themself.
3. What’s your favorite item at Dylan’s?
Our Dylan’s Candy BarN mix of gummy animals. A percentage of proceeds goes to our foundation, Dylan’s Candy BarN, which helps support animals in need and provide awareness for shelters so people adopt dogs.
4. What’s next on the horizon for you?
Opening stores internationally and potentially a line of pet clothes, baby clothes, bedding and more candy themed lifestyle products.
5. You’re known for your amazing sense of style. Who are some of your style influencers?
Thanks! My parents, Ricky and Ralph Lauren; Giselle; Elle Macpherson
6. Did you have any expectations about what being a founder would be like? Were you right? What has surprised you?
I was always excited to create my own company and be a business leader, and pioneer creating the world’s largest candy store. I am surprised by how many other founders and even major business people and VIPs I respect and I see as role models love candy and visiting my stores, too.
7. What is your advice to our aspiring entrepreneurs? Are there must-take classes in college or must-have experiences?
I enjoyed the book “Pour Your Heart Into It,” by Howard Shultz. It’s a good educating book. I also think one must listen to their gut and surround themselves with supportive people who can also help in areas one may be less strong or knowledgeable in.
8. Do you think it’s harder to be a woman entrepreneur? If so, why?
Not really. I think it was more so starting a business in my mid 20’s and people challenging how one can change the perception of candy that’s been around forever.
9. What is your favorite inspirational quote or saying?
“Awareness. Acceptance. Action”
10. What does She’s Fit to Lead mean to you? How does someone show they are fit to lead?
If someone is mentally, physically and emotionally stable to balance life and career and everything in between while keeping sight of their goals and inspiring others to follow, then they are fit to lead.