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Meet Tuckernuck Girl Molly Fienning

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A Tuckernuck Girl inspires us with her zest for life, intelligence, unique sense of style, kindness, and talent. Meet Molly, cofounder of Babiators, mom, and community activist. Molly lives in Charleston, South Carolina with her husband and their two adorable little boys where she runs Babiators, which makes safe, durable and stylin' shades for babies and kids (they've sold over 2 million pairs sold so far!) Follow along as we spend the day to get to know this Tuckernuck Girl a little better.
My husband Ted is a F-18 fighter pilot for the Marine Corps, which issues aviator shades to all its pilots to protect their eyes while flying. Babies and kids' eyes are even more susceptible to sun damage, so my partners and I wanted to protect those little eyes too! We came up with the brand name Babiators for "baby aviators", which made us all giggle so we knew we had a fun idea on our hands. Seven months post-launch, we were selling to 100 boutiques. Today, seven years later, we sell in 3000+ doors and 50 countries, which still sounds surreal to me!
Prior to Babiators, I worked in technology at IBM and Harvard Law School's Berkman Center for Internet & Society. I graduated from Harvard University with a bachelors in Electrical Engineering & Computer Science.
Charleston is a beautiful city, and it’s wonderful to wake up here with my family everyday. But what I love most about this city is its awesome and connected community of people. Charleston is overflowing with talented and kind creatives and entrepreneurs. I’m particularly inspired by the mix of bad-ass women in this city, who are doing really phenomenal things. It’s fun to watch unfold.
Learning how to let go of certain tasks and roles I once played as we scale and grow is not always the easiest for me. We're fortunate to have such an amazing team and network of partners, and they need the space to be creative and do cool work on their own. I often remind myself to move further away from the daily nitty gritty, so I don't become a bottleneck.

WHAT QUALITIES DO YOU APPRECIATE THE MOST IN YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS?
The ability to show up for you, show empathy towards you and laugh with you.

WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR FAVORITE TRAVEL MOMENT?
My husband proposed to me at sunset on a rice boat in rural South India. It's hard to beat that sweet, spontaneous, life-changing moment. 

WHAT IS YOUR MAIN FAULT?
I'm not good at taking no for an answer.

WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST STRENGTH?
I...I'm not good at taking no for an answer? :)

WHAT IS YOUR IDEA OF HAPPINESS?
Quality time with my favorite people in the world, those truly important people who have space within my heart. Eating yummy food, drinking good wine, dancing to live music, taking strolls and talking about real things -- preferably all outdoors in the mountains somewhere.

WHERE DO YOU FIND INSPIRATION FOR YOU HOME DECOR?
At the moment, I am actually getting a lot of inspiration from my instagram feed. From home decor, to fashion photography. I love seeing how different people, with different styles, decorate their homes and I am constantly inspired by the photographers in my feed and their use of color, movement and texture. One of my favorites at the moment is @jessechamberlinmarble.

FAVORITE FLOWER?
Right now, I'm really into our fiddle leaf palm tree. It's not a flower, but it's my favorite plant.

WHO IS YOUR FAVORITE HEROIN IN FICTION?
Jo March from Little Women is a spectacular character. I've loved her since I was a little girl. In real life, I am bowled over by the amazing female high school students who are speaking out so eloquently right now for what they envision for their country. The youth leading us, it's so motivating to me. 

FAVORITE ARTIST/DESIGNER?
Charleston is a dynamic creative community, and I'm so impressed by friends and local artists Chambers Austelle, Alex Wagonner, Raven Roxanne, Sally King Benedict (Atlanta-based now!) and Kate Long Stevenson.

FAVORITE MUSEUM?
The Gibbes Museum in Charleston is doing cool things locally. I also love the Neue Gallery in NYC (for Cafe Zabarsky's cozy romantic nooks) and the Picasso Museum in Paris (the juxtaposition of his cubist art in such a gorgeous, ornate building!).

DO YOU HAVE CHILDREN?  IF SO, HOW MANY AND WHAT ARE THEIR NAMES?
We have two sweet, smart and curious boys: Sawyer (6) and Fox (2).

WHAT’S ON YOUR READING LIST RIGHT NOW?
I'm not sure how/when this started, but I've been reading books of poetry recently. Three female poets' works in particular: Yrsa Daley-Ward, Nayyirah Waheed and Rupi Kaur. So much beauty and collective wisdom that just resonates with me when I read them. I was once told that really good poetry should tell you something you knew all along inside, yet couldn't verbalize.

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE ITEM THAT HAS BEEN PASSED DOWN TO YOU?
My design style is very clean, almost Scandinavian, so I don't have many heirlooms around the house. From my parents, I keep their hereditary gifts closer: my father's tenacity, my mother's trail-blazing spirit and their shared focus on giving their children unconditional love.

DESCRIBE YOUR STYLE IN 3 WORDS.
Flirty {with a} fitted waist.

WHO ARE YOUR STYLE ICONS?
I love the simple, seductive fashion of French women. Also, Olivia Palermo and Gwyneth Paltrow are great for inspiration.

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