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With Hound Street's one year anniversary coming up, I've been reflecting on a question I get asked a lot. How did it all get started?

It's hard to say really. Beginnings have so many small pieces. I suppose I could say it started many years ago with my housemate and friend Jana. She and her sewing machine (Lily, by name) reminded me that I had learned how to sew in 7th grade Home Ec class. She showed me that sewing could be fun and exciting.

But all good things come to an end. She found an amazing man to marry and took her sewing maching with her. That era ended; times changed. I moved from Tucson to Phoenix, married my husband Mike, and a few years later, borrowed a sewing machine I saw in a cupboard at my church. I started sewing again, mostly clothes for myself because it was much more fun to make than to shop.

Here's a picture of (with Olivia, of course!) the very first thing I made with that borrowed sewing machine. (No, it is no longer in existence any more because it was a disaster in so many ways.)

At the time, I was working at a truly amazing school, Arete Preparatory Academy in Gilbert, AZ. Word got around that Mrs. Barzee made her own clothes. I received a lot of encouragement, both at work and in my private life, that I should turn my creativity into a side hustle. The thought spun and spun...and spun some more.

In May of 2016, Mike encouraged me to attend Christy Wright's Business Boutique event in Phoenix. That clinched it - I was starting a business dedicated to making cute dog walking bags! After the school year ended, I began working full time figuring out what exactly what I needed to do to start a business, but by mid-July, Hound Street Boutique was born!

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