Ladies Of Leisure (LOL) is many things: magazines, creative workshops, fun events, t-shirts, totes – most importantly – a community where smart women support other smart women. Founder Savannah Anand-Sobti, 24, and editor Sally Tabart, 26, have been slowly growing and nurturing their passion project for the past three years. We spoke to them about running a side-gig between two people and managing LOL while holding down a day job.
Tell us about the team behind LOL.
Sally: It’s like an ever-breathing organism, but Sav and I are the constants. Sav started LoL because she wanted to have a tangible output for her textile design and support her friends who were doing creative things. At the time, there wasn’t really a platform for women to celebrate other women.
How do the two of you work together?
Sally: Sav takes care of all the visual stuff. She’s a gun at that. I take care of the written stuff, so we’re a pretty good team because we have our specific areas, but we work together really well. People come in depending on the project. For example, for the third publication our graphic designer Naomi has been on board almost five days a week.
How do you manage things between the two of you day to day? What tools do you use?
Sally: We’re in constant communication across every platform: email, messenger, text. I reckon we probably message every hour.
Sav: I message her every day. Sal might be at her job, and I’ll be missing a file so I’ll send her a text, and she’ll send me what I need. It never stops and we make it work.
Sally: It’s really good. Even though I might be texting in the bathroom at work! We have a studio space, too, so it’s nice when we can be in there together working, but our phones and the internet are magical. There is no way we could do this without the internet.
You both make the mag, but also apparel, workshops and events. How do you find time to manage everything while having a day job?
Sav: We were pretty fortunate when we started doing the workshops, which were all consuming, because we weren’t working our day jobs as much and could really focus. I personally have a really good balance between LoL and my day job. I do a marketing job a couple of days a week and do LOL the rest of the time.
Sally: I think there’s a perception that when a project gets to a certain stage you are there full time for it, but that’s not necessarily true. It can be hard – especially when there are just two of us – to always be on email and respond as if it’s our full-time job.
Are there any mistakes you’ve made, or things you’d do differently?
Sav: We try to focus on one thing at a time now. It’s something we’ve learned. There have been moments where we’ve taken on too much and have realised we’re in too deep.
Sav, your day job is in marketing. Have you picked up any skills that have helped support LOL?
Sav: I actually did the reverse. LOL helped me get this job. I only recently got the gig, and it made so much sense after being self-taught across social media. There’s a variety of ways you can learn and I believe you can gain great skills by working for yourself.
Sally: It can be hard sometimes, though, because I guess if we were working for other people there would be someone to guide us. It’s definitely more high cost. We’re still learning, and still making mistakes, but I think that ultimately those mistakes are huge lessons that we really reflect on.
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