GET TO KNOW LUCKYLEO

Each piece of dancewear is created in house at our Denver, Colorado, workshop by our amazing team of expert sewists. Sisters, and former professional ballet dancers, Chelsea and Heather carefully design each leotard and oversee production at their small studio where your creations are sewn and shipped.

Chelsea Early

Founder & Designer

After dancing professionally with Ballet Arizona for many years, Chelsea felt driven to continue to focus her life around creativity, and turned her career-ending injury into an opportunity to pursue another passion: fashion design. She is self-taught in sewing and running a business and learned how to sew by whipping up custom creations for her friends at Ballet Arizona. She joined up with Heather to start their own sister-run leotard brand, Luckyleo, in 2015. Chelsea loves reading books on business theory, as well as watching YouTube to learn new sewing techniques, and used to create ballroom gowns, wedding dresses, hand-tooled leather creations, and up-cycled baby outfits all on Etsy before starting Luckyleo. You’ll normally find Chelsea dreaming up the next print, painting new florals for a print, or sketching, drafting, and sewing up a new design. Chelsea’s favorite part of running Luckyleo is styling and coming up with concepts for the next Luckyleo photoshoot with Heather.

Heather Walker

Founder & Designer

As a hardcore Balanchine fan, Heather spent her favorite summers dancing at SAB in New York and PNB in Seattle before she ended up dancing professionally in the company with Chelsea at Ballet Arizona. After her injury, she went on to create Luckyleo with Chelsea to be able to give something to the dancers of today! Heather didn’t know how to sew before Luckyleo was started, but quickly found that the humming of the machine, and the focus it required was a great fit for her, and she fell in love with designing and creating pieces with stretch fabric in particular. When she’s not taking care of business at Luckyleo Headquarters, she spends her time bouldering, hiking, sending her loved ones bizarre snapchats, and tending to her many indoor plants while sipping a pour over with a good record spinning. At Luckyleo, she’s often found working on photo and print editing, planning product launches and photo shoots, designing Express, and cleaning the workshop dressed as the Sanitary Fairy!

Karen Saari

Founder & Fulfillment Leader

Karen is lovingly referred to as “Momma K” by our fabulous Luckyleo team, and her kindness warms all who work with her. She is always one to make a joke when faced with a problem, all while expertly coming up with an excellent solution. She started the company with Heather and Chelsea right when they first had the spark of an idea of running their own leotard brand and helped make everything possible by lending a hand in every department from production management to customer service over the years. You can find her wildly dancing with excitement while waiting for the next shipping label to print, since she’s so happy to send out your beautiful hand-crafted Luckyleo dancewear, and normally has a giant, brimming cup of coffee close at hand. When she’s not heading up our fulfillment department at Luckyleo, she’s either throwing a theme party for a team member’s birthday or anniversary with the company, or helping with the big decisions that make the company tick! Karen’s super power is her ability to say the kindest compliment that will bring you to tears, since she’s so thoughtful and loving.

Kim Theisen

Maker

Kim started with us as a cutter back in 2016, and is now one of our 3 Makers, which means she’s an expert sewist who creates your custom leotard from start to finish. Besides knowing everything there is to know about leotard creation, she is an incredible seamstress outside of work, as well. She has her bachelor’s in Fashion Design and brings an endless knowledge to her work as she’s trained in patterning, grading, and highly-skilled sewing techniques. You might see her working away at your custom leotards while dressed up as her cat, Annyoung, or listening to true crime podcasts. When she’s not making leotards, she’s hunting for mushrooms in the forest or whipping up a delicious meal with tasty buttery morels!

Learn more about her & her work HERE.

Connor Jones

Knowledge Wizard

Connor started with us as a topstitcher in 2016 and is now one of our 3 Makers, which means he’s an expert sewist who creates your custom leotard from start to finish. His pup Eireann is frequently lounging on his chair while he sews, and Connor is our resident Luckyleo historian since he remembers all our retired styles, prints, and shenanigans! He is also heralded as “The Thread Master” due to his innate ability to use up the final inches of spools of thread rather than letting it go to waste! It’s because of his expertise that he is our “Knowlegde Wizard” which means he is our official trainer and sharer of knowledge in the production arena! Whenever we hire someone new or are training our sewists in new styles it is Connor’s job to teach them the steps involved with each of our sewing roles. His patient and enthusiastic demeanor makes him a wonderful teacher and his infectious laugh makes the whole process of learning new skills less stressful. Beyond his leotard expertise, he’s a self-taught sewist who creates amazing and extravagant costumes for his burlesque numbers and is always traveling to exotic locations for his shows. Outside of work, Connor spends his time performing, creating new numbers, creating his own custom designs, and producing incredible shows in Denver and beyond.

Learn more about him & his work HERE.

Ondine Montoya

Maker

Ondine started with us as a cutter in 2018 and is now one of our 3 Makers, which means she’s an expert sewist who creates your custom leotard from start to finish. Besides her mad leotard skills, she owns her own business, and creates over-the-top and intricate cosplay costumes from scratch at home! (One of her costumes even has floating sleeves that don’t touch her arms!) When she’s creating your leotards, you’ll often find her listening to an audiobook novel or dreaming up a new color combination for designs. In her own time, she’s always busy at her studio with her printing business, creating new costumes, or mastering a new type of sewing machine, or setting up a booth at a large convention!

Learn more about her & her work HERE.

Adrianna Perricone

Sewing Team

Adrianna started with us as our workshop assistant in the middle of our busiest season in 2018, then quickly moved into our sewing team. She’s mastered every step of the creation process on nearly every leotard style, and is known for her attention to detail and hard work! She’s an expert hairstylist and makeup artist and is always wowing us when she walks into work with a new vibrant and stunning hair color she dyed herself! While she’s here sewing up seams, she’s always coming up with great thoughts for ways to improve the sewing process, showing up with on-point themed makeup when we’re celebrating something, and is known for her perfect posture while sewing. (It’s harder to keep great posture than you’d think!) When she’s not making leotards here, she spends time strengthening at the gym and cutting and dying her clients’ hair!

Radha Shivagiri

Sewing Team

Radha joined our sewing team in October of 2020, and has been helping us keep up with stocking Allure leotards! She's learned the cutting, serging, and elastic portion of the process, and is a super hard worker that won't stop until each step is perfect. When she's not here making leotards, she's working on her own clothing line of creative and intricate pieces. She just showed some of her looks in a Dever Fashion Show, and has her own sewing studio in the Santa Fe Arts District of Denver, just walking distance from our workshop!

Kathryn Werner

Sewing Team/Reporting & Inventory Management

Kathryn joined us in 2019 as a cutter and is currently working in our sewing team assembling leotards. She’s constantly biking into work and spending her free time training for marathons or reading a good book. Kathryn used to live in a tiny house with her boyfriend and (you won’t believe it) Great Dane! While she’s at work she brings steady positivity and her ability to work so hard while bringing such joy to everyone around her is invaluable! If we are lucky, she’ll occasionally bring in Ava (the Great Dane) to help us with production, too. She also helps with all aspects of production's inventory and ordering so that everything gets out to you all just as promised and our sewing team has everything they need.

Ann Terrell

Digital Processor & Customer Support

Ann joined our team in 2019 and started as a sewing team member in elastics, serging, and cutting, and has since transitioned to the administrative side of things! She helps us maintain our website by creating and uploading all new Express listings and managing stocked inventory, helps with all aspects of customer service, and also manages our international wholesale. She’s always ready to help out with a smile in any way that's needed, and is an incredible multitasker. Ann is constantly working on a fun project outside of Luckyleo, like hosting movie night events in full costume, or performing burlesque with our other team member Connor! She brings by her pup, Hank, to brighten our day at the workshop, and he’s often found waddling (his legs are quite short) around the whole production floor looking for love and cuddles.

Treena Rice

Maker

Treena joined us in 2019 and has conquered every step of the creation process on almost every leotard style! She radiates positive vibes and smiles while she’s tackling any of the departments that are needed in the assembly line that week, and is often seen working in her Luckyleo leggings & tops. She’s currently attending school for wrestling, and is constantly sewing up a new project made with unconventional materials that turn out otherworldly for her custom-piece clients she works with outside of Luckyleo. Treena is a self-taught designer and is full of creativity and motivation, constantly innovating and bringing fierce beauty into this world (like her glow-in-the-dark skin-tight custom designs she creates in her own line)!

Sydney Clapp

Fulfillment specialist

Sydney joined our team in September of 2019 as our workshop assistant, and is now our Fulfillment Specialist! She packages up your items with lots of love and care, prints out shipping labels (she's a pro at international custom forms!) and makes sure we are meeting all of our deadlines and all complete pieces are getting to you as quickly as they can. She's always a steady and comforting presence, and is often dancing and jamming to tunes in her headphones in the shipping area. Spend a few minutes with her, and you'll find yourself talking about the meaning of life! When she's not fulfilling orders here, she's usually working on her music career, writing songs, playing shows, and creating music videos! Check out her latest release called Golden Air on Spotify (and also featured on our local radio station 102.3).

Taylor Carlton

Maker

Taylor joined our team in October of 2019 and has just recently graduated to a Maker, which means she creates Luckyleos from start to finish and has mastered every step of the creation process! She is always working hard and fast, but with so much love and precision put into every step to make your Luckyleo turn out just perfect. She has a history working in fast paced sewing workshops, and has shared so many awesome tips to help us and the team work quickly and efficiently. When she's not here making your custom leotards, she's busy working on creating her beautiful jewelry company from metallic insects and skulls that are just incredible creations every time.

Learn more about her & her work HERE.

Jenny Hayes

Sewing Team

Jenny joined our team in the summer of 2020, and started off by helping with pattern work, then moved over to our sewing team to create leotards! She is a whiz at elastics and cutting, and helps with the hand sewing and tacking of our pinches, as well. She is 100% the snack queen of our team, and always has a stash of delicious goodies near her work station that she is kind enough to share! When she's not at the workshop making leotards, she is often painting a stunning masterpiece... Her work is simply beautiful and she's been selling her pieces locally!

Shelby Nungester

Workshop Assistant

Shelby joined our team in the summer of 2020 on our sewing team as a cutter and coverstitcher. Her bright and happy attitude and awesome sense of humor is such a wonderful addition to our workshop. Her natural perfectionism made her the perfect candidate to transition to our Workshop Assistant position when it opened up, where she focuses mainly on quality checking produced items. She also helps us organize, prepare for fulfillment, and track numbers for all the completed items coming from our production! She's amazing at catching any issue before it goes out the door to you, and skilled at making sure every item of each order is where it needs to be! We love when she brings her smiley pitbull, Kai, to hang out with us at the workshop. In her free time you can catch Shelby at the skatepark smoothly dropping into bowls on her roller skates!

Michelle Baldwin

Sewing Team

Michelle joined us in 2020 on our production team sewing up leotards, but quickly transitioned into our skirts department where her keen eye for detail is essential when creating our gorgeous skirts. It can be tricky managing an entire department by yourself but Michelle is no stranger to hard work! Michelle is a famous Burlesque dancer, known by her stage name Vivienne Vavoom, and is responsible for bringing the Burlesque revival to Denver (and if you think we’re exaggerating just Google her, she’s a legend!) There’s no stopping this woman when it comes to event planning. She created the Unicorn Festival, Chocolate Festival, and local clothing swaps, just to name a few. When she isn’t being a trailblazer, Michelle loves collecting all things vintage. Her favorite era is the 1930’s and she never fails to dress to impress!

Julia Getz

Sewing Team

Julia joined Luckyleo in 2020 on our Apprentice team and has quickly mastered the art of sewing our most timeless style, the Allure! Julia’s fashion sense is a sensation in the Luckyleo workshop as she always has something unique & colorful on. She’s often seen in pink & soft colors of pastel, so when we asked her to wear black for her portrait she joked that she only owned a single black outfit, but of course it still had pink hearts on it! Julia’s incredible taste in fashion extends beyond the workshop, where she has her own streetwear line called Honey Love Designs. When it’s time to unwind you can find Julia in her kitchen making Cinnamon Rolls from scratch!

Janelle Vigil

Print & Press Operator

Janelle joined Luckyleo in 2020 and started on the production team sewing up leotards! She loves working in 3D modeling and her experience as an Industrial Designer made her the perfect fit to learn how to use our heavy machinery when it comes to printing our fabric! Janelle’s always up for a challenge and has been an essential part of our production line when it comes to handling the everyday process of printing our unique prints on fabric. When she isn’t lifting heavy rolls off our printing press you can find Janelle elbow deep in dirt as she tends to her vegetable garden! She is passionate about urban farming and loves pairing her homegrown vegetables with some freshly baked Sourdough bread.

Hannah Reitsma

Sewing Team

Hannah joined our team in 2021 as a cutter and soon proved she was capable of so much more! She’s now training to serge, elastic, and topstitch leotards too! Hannah is pure sunshine with a warm smile to match. Her lively spunk is mirrored in her adorable shaggy dog, Fig, who is a favorite around the workshop! We love the days when Hannah generously leads our team in a relaxing yoga class during our weekly Team Time breaks. Before moving to Denver, Hannah was a professional modern dancer and yoga instructor in Seattle. These days, Hannah enjoys baking scones and caring for her plants (her favorite is the String of Hearts!)

Jack Hinton

Sewing Team

Jack joined our team in 2021 and immediately brightened up the place with his vibrant and inviting personality. He has been hard at work on our Apprentice team learning all of the roles in leotard production from cutting, to serging, elastics and coverstitch! His costumes on our theme days are unforgettable and his incredible head of curls can always be seen bouncing around as he joyfully works on sewing up leotards. We’ve been lucky enough to enjoy the company of his sweet dog, Lana, when she spends time here at the workshop! When Jack isn’t in the workshop he loves to bake and cook. Otherwise, you can probably find him doing yoga or soaking up the sunshine on the patio with his cat, LB.

Senaiet Mesgun

Workshop Assistant

Senaiet started with us as a workshop assistant in 2021 and was vital to helping us quality check leotards and help with the heavy lifting required of our printing press. She proved to be a quick learner with a keen eye for detail which made her a perfect fit for our sewing team! Her interest in sewing has led her to start digging into the creation process and sewing of Luckyleos, as well! Senaiet is someone who is overflowing with kindness & her sweet demeanor is absolutely magnetizing. She was born & raised in Denver but her parents immigrated here from Eritrea, a beautiful country in Eastern Africa! She fondly remembers spending a summer in Africa with her older sister & younger brother, learning the native language of Tigrinya! In her free time you can often find Senaiet with a camera in her hand as she is an avid photographer & videographer, and is currently teaching herself the ins and outs of Photoshop. Otherwise, she’s probably relaxing with a bowl full of Thai food!