julie arvan

Fabulous People: Julie Arvan

Julie Arvan is the chief mother officer, owner and founder of Nesting Days, a San Francisco-based company that sets out to welcome babies into the world by making skin-to-skin baby wearing, comfortable, safe, easy and pretty. “As I worked with new moms I saw the need for a better newborn carrier, and I realized that I had the unique combination of skills and experience to create it. As it turned out, this was a big idea that created a brand-new niche the world was just about to realize it needed.” Learn about Julie Arvan…

Hometown: I grew up in the 1950’s in Detroit, Michigan, when moms stayed home, kids played on the block until the streetlights went on, and dinner was promptly at six when Dad arrive home. She gave birth to five children; I’m the middle child and when asked what I wanted to be when I grow up, my answer was, “a dancer and a mother.” One of my earliest memories was lying at her feet under the table as the sewing machine whirred above me. I still have that old Singer I learned on, and it is what I used to create the prototype for the Nesting Days newborn carrier that is the signature product of my business. 

First job: Babysitting my siblings and the neighborhood kids. My most fun job, and I’ve had many, was being a preschool teacher. 

Favorite ways to spend your free time in CA: I’ve had the good fortune of living in The City by the Bay for most my adult life. My husband and I moved here at 22. The habit of getting up early to have time to myself even though my sons long ago left the ‘nest’ has stayed with me. No two sunrises are the same, which delights me. 

Your biggest accomplishment and why: What I’m doing right now. At 74 years old, I might not be your typical entrepreneur, but in business, just like in life, age does have its advantages. I’m free to do what you love, and after having a wide variety of careers, the ah-ha moment arrived when I realized I had the background and skills to create a second womb for the fourth trimester that held a newborn skin-to-skin, in keeping with the latest research on infant development and bonding, that was also hands-free, and provided for the postpartum mom’s body the gentle compression she needed as she recovered from pregnancy and delivery. 

Someone who inspires you and why: Easy, Mister Rogers. I’ve been a fan since the beginning. His neighborhood was a safe, loving place!

Favorite quote: “Love is at the root of everything – all learning, all parenting, all relationships…love, or the lack of it.” Fred Rogers

Advice to someone pursuing a career path in what you do: Let me put on my “career doula” hat and share a few words of encouragement: It is never too late to do what you love. You’re never too old to make a difference. And there’s never been a wiser, more experienced you than the person you are today.

Something someone would be surprised to learn about you: I present as an extrovert, but I really am an introvert. I learned at a young age to turn on the charm, but it is in the quiet moments that I can be my authentic self. 

What makes someone fabulous: In Brene Brown’s words, “Having the courage to show up when you can’t control the outcome.” 

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