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From Nanny to President

We started The ZigZag Stripe nearly nine years ago. When we started in our little 10x10 spare room at home, I never thought that one day I’d have a business doing tens of millions of dollars a year. I thought that I’d have this little “mom and pop” boutique that helped pay bills, and we’d live happily ever after. Little did I know that we’d grow our own little empire and start making a name for ourselves in the e-commerce world. As we started growing, we realized we needed to structure things in our business a little differently for the so-called “long haul.” We daydreamed of the day we’d call ourselves CEO … 

We never know what our lives will entail. But God does. And five years ago, God brought Melanie Rubalcaba into our lives. 

“Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11

Mel started as our nanny for our three boys. She was terrific with them. The kids LOVED her. She immediately became a part of our family; she even had a stocking at Christmas. Do you ever have that feeling when you just know something is right? We had that feeling with her. Her being in our life was just right.


Mel and I really got to know each other through this time, and our friendship just developed naturally. I have never known someone in my life that is so much like me. Over the years, our boys got older, and having a nanny wasn’t something they needed anymore. At that time, Mel was in grad school and transitioned to working at the warehouse for ZZS. She literally started doing whatever needed to be done. Pulling orders, receiving new inventory, shipping orders … even a few photo shoots here and there. She learned the business from all angles. This is when she fell in love with ZZS. She slowly transitioned into buying with me and flourished! She’s always been into fashion, and this position was made for her. Over the past 8.5 years, I’ve never had someone on our team that saw the same vision I see for ZZS, until Mel came along. She sees the big picture. She sees that it’s not about putting money in our pockets; it’s about creating jobs for other families and making a difference in the world with what we do, no matter how small it might be. It’s ultimately about building something bigger than us. 



“You will need to appoint competent leaders who respect God and are trustworthy and honest. Then put them over groups of 10, 50, 100 and 1,000.” Exodus 18:21

We’ve watched her grow from a college graduate, to a wife, to a mother and now … to the President of The ZigZag Stripe. We are so excited to expand our executive team. Successful people always say, “Don’t try to do it all. Find capable people of integrity to empower and delegate to then get out of their way and let them lead.” Mel will one day lead our team when me and Joel retire off into the sunset of Hawaii. (Many, many years down the road!) She brings a fresh perspective to our growing business and is the definition of a boss babe. 

Welcome to our new chapter!


Mel with Our Boys - Christmas 2021
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  • Deb

    I love your clothes. Everything is quite unique which is great. You won’t encounter someone wearing the same outfit!
    Who is the beautiful model with the short hair? Is that Vanessa?

  • Gwen Gardner

    Hi everyone! It’s 12:48 AM Dec. 7, 2022. I have shopped with y’all since the end of 2020. I want to tell you, just how much I appreciate you all when I email 100 times to ask questions about a fit about something. Thank you for always helping me out with such joy and grace! Y’all are great! I have a whole room full of ZZS clothes that I love!💛Gwen

  • Connie Berry

    Thank you for your bold faith.

  • Tina Pentecost

    Hey Leslie,
    I’ve just read your story about Mel! And Vanessa! The boys, and the whole crew at ZZS.
    I am happy I have found a wonderful place to purchase from that I can feel like I’m sowing seed into good ground when I purchase from you! And that’s exactly what I’m doing!
    I am Soo excited to get the dress and blouse, well, it’s a smock top, Vanessa modeled yesterday 8/23/22 Tuesday. It’s a gray color with embroidery type material on the top. I believe it has the name Beauty in it.
    I also purchased a super cute little red dress with flowers on it she modeled with white boots. Mel modeled it as well! They all looked soooo very wonderful!
    I’m so excited your journey has taken off like it has, you are truly Blessed! God gave you a vision, and you are prospering because you chose to answer His call, being Obedient to Him, in His love, you answered that call. ❤️
    I’m proud to wear your murchandice! I’m so excited and can’t wait till it arrives!
    Thank you for everything you all do!
    May the Lord continue to Bless everything you set your hands too!
    Deuteronomy 28
    WE ARE BLESSED! 🙌 Thank you Lord For Your Blessings!!!

  • Rose DellAira

    Dear Mel, I love reading your post scripts. You make us customers feel like family. I feel like I know you and sm so happy to get your texts and see what new fashions you found for me! Please keep doing what you’re doing and know you really are needed and appriciated.

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