About Us - OLD
Under Stella’s Umbrella does not sell umbrellas – it is a corporate umbrella for all its brands – which means… for all the things Stella thinks up! Stella’s mind has a tendency to wander and create products in a wide range of categories - hence the need for a corporate umbrella to ‘rein’ her in and encompass them all. It is only fitting that they have an umbrella to do so, since the first items Stella ever sold in the gift industry were hand painted canvas & bamboo umbrellas over 20 years ago.
About Their Brands
Under Stella's Umbrella has 7 brands which are sold in the gift industry all over the US. As they say, "we have A Beaucoup of Beautiful Things”. The individual gift lines are uniquely their own, but similar in their high design, high perceived value & light and colorful approach to life.
Bellemonde It is indeed a beautiful world -- which for those of you without high school French that is what bellemonde means. It is also the name of one of Stella's best friends' house built in the 1920s in Atlanta. Bellemonde started as a home show business and then they hit the road as a traveling retailer going from charity show to charity show all over the country! Now it is one of the premier luggage lines in the gift industry featuring their signature faux suede, PETA approved, ‘vegan’ bags with a focus on that hard to find guy gift.
The business morphed to a wholesale biz after several trips back to Asia when Stella's other company, Fine Whines, was born.
Fine Whines Stella's crazy fast paced world filled with acronyms and disorders inspired her to create this brand. Many of her friends, and often our own mirrors, have been the source of the acronyms which are all indicative of the times. In our over stressed, over scheduled lives, the best medicine and therapy is laughter. So when life becomes uncorked, it's ok to whine a little ... but remember to laugh a lot!
Garden Party is an event planners dream but also fun for everyday living – it includes spectacular Hand-Forged Candelabras, as well as Dress-Ups: Tromp l'oeil Table and Chair Covers that turn banquet-drab into Chippendale-fab!
Born Identities is a collection of baby, entertaining & everyday items designed to express your home grown identities, whether Southern Born, Arkansas Born, Mississippi Born, Delta Born, Louisiana Born, Alabama Born, Georgia Born, Tennessee Born, North or South Carolina Born or Texas Born.
“Because Life is Full of BUTS”, Stella launched But Girls, a series of funny excuses for the “BUTS” in life, which can be found on many gift items including notepads, napkins & totes. “ I would be a full time mom, BUT it wouldn’t be best for the children.” + many more signs of the times!
Whispers Stella's new line of exquisite ribbon necklaces and scarves featured on this website have taken the world by storm. USU has been shouting about them since June 2013 and has sold over 30,000 to shops all around the country and the numbers are growing every day. Made in Greensboro Alabama, she has teamed up with a local non-profit to help women in the Black Belt region of Alabama. Whispers are changing lives one ribbon necklace at a time!
Now Truly About USU!
Stella and her husband Tom now live in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Tom grew up in Atlanta and Stella grew up in Tuscaloosa. The Westminster Schools, University of Virginia, Navy/Vietnam, Emory MBA, CPA, are key milestones in Tom's life before Stella (BS). Sweet Briar College, University of Alabama, Kappa Kappa Gamma and Real Estate describe Stella before Tom.
They met, married and moved to Hong Kong in the early 80s. That move changed their lives forever -- they definitely have a far eastern slant on life! While in Hong Kong, Tom was an accountant for Arthur Young & Co., their first son was born, and soon thereafter Stella started Temptations Asia Limited, a shopping service. Stella honed her shopping skills while taking other people shopping by chauffeur-driven limousine. Life is grand when you can ride around in the back of a limo, drink wine, spend other people’s money and call it work!
They moved back to the States and Tom became a CFO for a variety of companies. Stella had found her true passion while in Hong Kong - buying and selling! Bellemonde was born in 2001 when Tom had had enough of managing other peoples' businesses and decided he needed to manage Stella – his toughest job yet! Their Hong Kong born child, Everett, and his wife Laura live in Atlanta where he works in the IT world of SunTrust Bank. They are the proud grandparents to 4 of the cutest children on the planet (3 boys and a girl).
Their other son, George lives in Jackson Hole WY and loves life in the mountains. Both of the boys help them from time to time when they can be captured!
The team under the umbrella is small but mighty! Amy is #1 as she is prone to remind them (that is - she is extension #1) and takes care of all of their customers beautifully. The gals in Greensboro making Whispers are near and dear to their hearts, and the Distribution Warehouse team makes sure that all your orders go out on time and well packed.
We hope to bring a smile to your face and hours of enjoyment with one or more of USU's products.