The phrase “one mind, two bodies” perfectly describes sisters Caroline and Lizzy Tierney, Co-Founders of Daughter Lessons NYC, a high quality activewear brand that successfully merges both function and fashion.
With Caroline successfully pursuing a career in investment sales and Lizzy on her way to dancing professionally, the Pandemic revealed a turning point in both of their careers. They both knew they wanted to find a way to build a community guided by their love of movement and fashion.
“Growing up in a life based around dancing and fitness, there was no question that we wanted to create something in the activewear and fitness space.” The driving force behind Daughter Lessons is to encourage confidence through movement.
“The brand was always the vehicle for a much larger mission. Encourage people to move, feel confident in their own skin and build a community around strong women.” Caroline, Co-Founder
“We want people to feel like they could do anything in it. DL sits at the intersection of fashion and function.” Lizzy, Co-Founder
Always viewing themselves as the genuine consumers, Caroline and Lizzy knew the kind of activewear they had to create. When shopping for activewear for themselves, the sisters found it difficult finding clothes that provided the function that is needed for workouts yet still centered around fashion.
“A lot of great activewear that we purchase looks super cute, but when you put it through a high intensity workout, a lot of it was falling down, piling or gapping at certain places.” - Caroline, Co-Founder
Seeing a gap in the market, the importance of creating activewear that is flattering, fashionable and could withstand the intensity of any workout was the problem the Tierney sisters knew they needed to solve.
“When wearing Daughter Lesson we want people to feel confident in the clothes, but beyond that we want people to feel like they could wear them to a workout and know that the clothes will carry them through their day.” - Lizzy, Co-Founder
“We always want to ensure that the clothes convery our mission. When you dress good, you feel good.”
As Succession watchers know, going into business with family can be tough. But when asked who their dream business partner would be, there was no hesitation when they simultaneously said “each other.”
“When working with family, the stakes are higher. But everything falls right off the back, you know not to take anything personally.” stated older sister Caroline, who always had the entrepreneurial itch.
Sisters being in business together can be tricky, but the co-founders pride their success on their similarities, but also knowing when to remove their egos. Only 2 years apart, Caroline praises Lizzy on her maturity and business centric mind, while Lizzy admires the natural born leader in Caroline.
Building a business from the ground up can be one of the most isolating experiences, not to mention the challenges of creating a brand during a worldwide pandemic. Feeling more than grateful to have each other, Caroline and Lizzy truly lean into their relationship and couldn’t imagine not having one another on this entrepreneurial journey.
When asked what advice they would give to future female entrepreneurs, they both emphasized the importance of putting yourself out there, being authentic, and loving what you do. Both sisters touched upon the distinction between self esteem and confidence and how the mindset attributes to their success as female founders. “You have to have such high self esteem. Trusting yourself, being authentic and always knowing that you’re moving in the right direction even on days when you may not be feeling confident.”
“I never thought I’d be in a position where I could start my own business. But I love fashion, I love working out, I love activewear and I love my sister and the fact they’re all coming together in a way that we get to start a business together, you just have to eat, sleep and breathe it. You truly have to love what you’re doing.” - Lizzy, Co- Founder
“Clarity comes through action, in order to figure out if something is going to work you really have to go through it and you have to be willing to fail. There’s no better time than the present, you just need to go for it and surround yourself with people who want to see you succeed.” - Caroline, Co-Founder
In a recent podcast episode, Marianna Hewitt provided some of the best inspirational advice for the DL Co-Founders. She talked about how her and Lauren Ireland created the Summer Fridays empire by “acting like a big business on a small business budget.”
“Caroline and I are such dreamers and we know where we want to be. So it’s always about getting creative on how to act like a big business but bring it to scale to where we are as a startup” - Lizzy, Co-Founder
When discussing 5 year goals for DL, the Tierney sisters plan for the company to be the number one activewear brand in New York City. “When you think New York City premium activewear, it should be Daughter Lessons”. Creating a physical location is also in the pipeline for the trendsetting brand, “somewhere where people can really identify with the brand and creating a space that is super unique to us.”
When Daughter Lessons officially launched in March of this year, both Caroline and Lizzy couldn’t have imagined the amount of positive feedback and success they’ve achieved within the short 5 months.
“To think about 5 years from now is super exciting and the sky's the limit, we’re truly just so excited to better our product, build a bigger community and grow.” - Caroline, Co-Founder