Featured: Sadia Sharmin (MBA ’11)
By Sharon Feiereisen | Momtastic
I love the Cotonly tagline, which is “clothes designed for life.” It strikes me especially as I’m mid trying for another child and always loved the idea of clothes being passed on from child to child. So often handing down clothing is seen as something negative, but it can actually be something beautiful! As Cotonly founder, Sadia Sharmin, says – clothes have a story! Many of my most cherished pieces belonged to my mother and I love thinking of her every time I put them on.
Curious to find out more about her beautiful crafted and designed pieces (how fun is that lion sweater!?) I chatted with entrepreneur Sadia Sharmin, founder of Cotonly.
Momtastic: Can you tell us a little bit about your background before becoming a mom?
Sadia Sharmin: I grew up in Bangladesh and came to the U.S. over 20 years ago for my undergrad at Mount Holyoke College and later an MBA from MIT. I spent much of my career identifying opportunities, finding efficiencies and bringing about scale with companies like IBM, Microsoft, Salesforce, JP Morgan and American Express.
Growing up in Bangladesh, I was well aware of the negative impact that the textile manufacturing industry can have on the environment and on workers — Bangladesh is the second largest garments exporter in the world! My family rarely bought any new clothing for this reason. Anything “new” I received was given to me by my older siblings and cousins and I would get excited because they held many special memories of the people who had worn them before me. I have always wanted to leverage my experience and background growing up in Bangladesh, and Cotonly gave me that opportunity.