By Lauren Holcomb | Reporter
What started out as quarantine crafting has now become a widely popular small business for Houston freshman Landry Sanders.
LandryPaigeDesigns is an online boutique with a storefront booth at Painted Tree – Sugar Land. The business is owned and ran by Sanders and her mother, Darlene Sanders. Landry Sanders said she began by making bracelets and painting Bible verses to sell on Etsy over the initial quarantine in 2020, but it has blossomed into a much larger endeavor. Her best sellers, and Baylor campus favorites, are her custom sweatshirts.
“I was just bored and I thought I could do something fun and spread a little positivity,” Sanders said. “My grandma actually gave me a bunch of sweatshirts that she thrifted, and we decided to just bleach them. And then my mom said, ‘what if we get an embroidery machine?’ and we decided to get one. Then we just started making sweatshirts and all my friends loved them and we started actually making sweatshirts a thing.”
Sanders is a full-time student and involved in sorority life, so juggling schoolwork with her business is made possible with the help of her mother. While Sanders works more on the marketing and consumer interactions side on campus, her mother restocks the Painted Tree booth and creates the sweatshirt orders in Houston.
“My mom has been such a blessing. I don’t think I would’ve been able to do it all alone in college,” Sanders said. “It’s hard to figure out what to prioritize first. You have school, you have friendships, you have your relationship with the Lord, you have sorority stuff and then you have your business. It’s hard to know when to do what, but it’s doable.”
An apparel merchandising major, Sanders hopes to one day open her own boutique. With her new vendor’s license, she is taking the first step toward that goal by adding boutique clothing to her online store and booth at the Painted Tree.
“I went shopping [at The Painted Tree] with my mom and my aunt on Black Friday of 2020. I thought, ‘This is so cool; I wonder if we can get a booth here.’ They had a few left, so we quickly got one,” Sanders said. “We opened up around December 15, so it was a quick turnaround. It’s been so good, and I’ve got a lot of experience from that.”
Sanders’ roommate, Orange County, Calif., freshman Natalie Jefferson, has nothing but the utmost respect for the business. She says she received a free sweatshirt from Sanders at move in, and she loved it so much that she purchased two more on her own.
“It’s been super fun seeing her run her business,” Jefferson said. “I see her on the phone with her mom a lot, putting through the orders and processing them. Every now and then, she’ll come back in the room with a wagon full of sweatshirts and crewnecks, which is just so fun to see.”
Bringing her business to Baylor’s campus, Sanders has had the opportunity to meet friends through designing sweatshirts and painting Bible verses. She has racked up over 2,000 followers on the LandryPaigeDesigns Instagram page, where she takes orders through direct message, and she has shipped her creations to orders from over 30 states nationwide.
“I think it’s so cool to meet people and just see people and things that I made all over campus. It’s literally been so cool,” Sanders said. “And then the little ways in which I’ve been able to talk about the Lord in my business has been really, really sweet too.”