The brief history of embroidery company Nerd & Brawler is utterly inspiring. In a nutshell: Two friends, Kara Herman and Megan Harris, with a passion for stitching clever sayings in hoops attended the Flea Style Summit in July. A few days later they launched their business.
Next month, you can learn from these ladies at our embroidery workshop. For now, read their story — which might just motivate you to pursue your creative passion sooner rather than later.
Here’s how it all went down.
Kara, who is currently a full-time student of literature at The University of North Texas and who is the “Nerd” half of the duo, learned to embroider from her grandmother when she was just 10 years old. Kara met Megan, a mom with a penchant for rap music and who earned the nickname “Beauty Brawler” in high school, when she went to work at Eastfield College in Mesquite. The two became fast friends, with wildly different interests that are somehow the perfect complement. Kara would embroider on her lunch hour and soon had her new friend channeling her wit and wisdom into stitching hoops, too.
Megan was a natural. “She just took off and ran with it,” Kara says, adding that now Kara sometimes sends her ideas that are so good she wants to cry.
The pair went together to the Flea Style Dallas show at Fair Park last March and discovered makers with a similar passion. “I have bins of stuff that I’ve made,” Kara says, “but I’ve never been really good at putting it out there.” Megan, who has a mind for marketing and a background in graphic design, was inspired by the embroidered hoops she saw at the show to change that.
Still, the hoops were just a hobby until the ladies attended our Summit.
They found that day — filled with stories of men and women who fought through their fears to launch their creative businesses — so exhilarating that they went home, designed their logo and launched Nerd & Brawler on Instagram five days later. “The Summit was so inspiring,” Megan says. “We were scribbling notes and nodding our heads, and left saying, ‘We’re going for it!’”
What’s more, prior to the Summit, they’d done a little embroidery on their canvas Flea Style totes (which we sent them when they registered for the Summit). We spotted those totes and were instant fans! We quickly asked them to do some totes for our shop (get your own!), and when we decided to do workshops, they were at the top of the list (tickets on sale now).
After the Summit, says Kara, “We were so jacked up! Just like, ‘Oh my god! We could do this.’ We are so grateful to Flea Style. Without it, we would not be where we are today.”
And where are they today? Working day and night to get ready for their Flea Style Dallas show premiere and taking custom orders via email. They are also prepping for their workshop next month, where they will share their enthusiasm for stitching. After that, Kara says, who knows. “We haven’t even scratched the surface on what we want to do — patterns, kits, classes. This is only the beginning; our brains are full of stuff!”
Watch our video to see them tell their story, find out what Megan’s favorite rap song is, hear the coolest thing Kara has ever done — and find out who said, “Even skanks say thanks.”
And if you really want to have a blast, sign up for the Nerd & Brawler workshop today.