Leslie Newton has had an amazing career—from writing sketch comedy for Saturday Night Live to launching Newlie, a versatile diaper bag line for modern mamas. Through it all, Newton says, she’s seen herself as a creator—bringing joy to people’s lives through comedy, and the creative design process.
We caught up with her to chat about Newlie, her new diaper bag line, as part of our #MotherlyMakers series, highlighting the women remaking our world.
What’s hilarious to you about motherhood?
Oh there are many hilarious moments being a mother but they may be more hilarious in retrospect then when they are actually happening.
I mean being covered in poop, spit up, pee, breast milk and just not caring because you don’t have the time or energy to care is pretty hilarious. Being so sleep deprived you catch yourself doing things like putting the cereal box in the fridge and the milk in the cupboard (yes I’ve done both) is pretty hilarious.
As your children get older and you try to “reason” with them on why they shouldn’t eat the dog’s food, or why at bedtime they can’t sleep under the dining room table next to a suitcase they packed filled with socks can be insanely frustrating in the moment but pretty hilarious later on.
What does a diaper bag represent in the life of the modern woman—and how have you built that into your product?
Well as a new mom, you no longer have the luxury to focus on things like what shoes to wear, or what great outfit you’re going to put on.
Your body’s different, you’re sleep deprived and your life’s just been turned upside down.
Your diaper bag becomes your main accessory and so I thought why not create one that looks cool and stylish, but is also really functional?
A t least this gives moms a little sense of style while navigating through the crazy first months and years as a mom.
Can you give us a little glimpse into a day-in-the-life of a entrepreneurial designer, owner, and creative director, not to mention mama?
At 6: 30 am. . .
A little voice wakes me up, “Mama will you get up now?” It’s my daughter Lily.
At 7:45 am. . .
Finished morning routine of getting Lily ready for school. After driving her to school I work out, then start answering emails and getting to work.
At 10:00 am. . .
Work work work.
At 1:00 pm. . .
Lunch, more work, do any girl scout meeting prep I need to do. (I’m a co-leaer of Lily’s Daisy Troop.)
At 3:00 pm. . .
Pick Lily up from school and take her to her various things: soccer, gymnastics, playdates or just home.
At 5:00 pm. . .
Make dinner, make sure Lily gets her homework done, family time, eventually get Lily ready for bed.
At 9:00 pm. . .
After Lily is asleep, either finish any remaining work or hang out with my husband.
Your business is all about making mothers’ lives better. If you could say just one thing to a new mama, what would it be?
Hang in there and enjoy every moment. When things get hard, remember our children stay little for such a short, fleeting time, so just cherish every moment.
What’s your secret to integrating work and life? We’re talking to onelittlething that if you just get that right, helps the rest of your life to hum along. Can you share?
Well having a general outline of what I need to do for the day and when I’l do it. It never goes exactly as planned but it helps to have an overall idea of how much I can realistically get done that day.
What does “Motherly” mean to you?
Loving, warm, supportive, strong, wise.