Meet Peri Levine, founder of Periwinkle Designs. A student at Tulane University, she is changing the world of hats and shoes. We are just obsessed with everything she designs and we know you will be, too. Check her out on instagram @periwinkle.designs, shop her designs, and connect with her on Facebook.
What is Periwinkle Designs?
A customized clothing company that specifically sells shoes and hats to colleges and sororities to show off peoples’ creativity and unique personalities.
What inspired you to start Periwinkle Designs?
I was inspired my senior year of high school. I saw other girls at Tulane University designing their own shoes and hats, and since I love art, I knew I could make my own shoes and hats. After a couple weeks, girls started loving my shoes and hats and I sold them to the majority of my graduating class.
Where do you get your inspiration?
I get my inspiration from tons of artists, mainly Henri Matisse. Also, when I am doing my art I am really inspired by friends. I go off of designs that I could see my friends wearing and the personalities of the people I am designing for.
What was like to start a business?
It was really empowering and it helped me become more self-sufficient at a young age. Going into your freshman year of college is a scary time, and starting my own business made me more confident and independent.
What was your business breakthrough moment?
I would definitely say my business breakthrough moment was when I got an order that was not from one of my friends. I set up an Instagram account the second I started Periwinkle Designs and when someone contacted me through Facebook, I realized Periwinkle Designs could turn into something big. It was the most exciting moment!
What do you do in your free time?
I volunteer for several different organizations in New Orleans. Mainly, I volunteer at Raintree House, which is a foster care home for at-risk girls who where neglected and abused. I volunteer there with a few of my friends and we do different empowering and stress relieving activities with the girls.. I use my arts and hat designs to help these girls and they love designing their own hats and are very responsive to this activity.
What is next for Periwinkle Designs?
I want to turn Periwinkle Designs into a company that is half-business, half charity involved. I want to give a portion, 15 percent, to the charities I am involved with. Basically, I want to use some of my profits to start more art programs for the girls I work with because for them, art is a very therapeutic way to cope with all of the negativity activity in their lives.
What is your favorite hat you have designed?
What is it like to run a business while in college?
It is definitely time-consuming because my hats are all hand drawn and all of the artwork is original. I have to set up time in my schedule to make the hats and I had to come up with an efficient way to balance school, volunteering, my social life, and Periwinkle Designs.
Where do you go to school and what are you studying?
I go to Tulane University and I double majoring in anthropology and a to-be-determined second major. In addition, I am minoring in fine arts.
What is one piece of advice you would give to a young woman wanting to start her own company?
Invest in yourself because it is so important to start believing in yourself at a young age. There is no time more perfect than now and always remember; you are the only person holding yourself back.
What is your favorite food?
Chocolate. I eat way more than I should!
What is your guilty pleasure?
Binge watching Gossip Girl. I have seen every episode many more times than I should have!
What do you do for fun?
I like going on adventures and exploring with my friends. I like experiencing new cultures, going to art museums, and tasting new foods, which are all things I get to do in New Orleans!
Describe yourself in one word.
How would your best friends describe you?
Full of energy