Meet Annalisa Thomas, Founder of Oilo!

When I think of the Oilo Collection, I think of fresh designs with crisp lines and a modern aesthetic that will create a serene yet bold statement in any room. After interviewing Annalisa Thomas, founder of Oilo, I realized this is exactly the feel she was going for when she created this stunning collection of children’s bedding and decor. The dynamic colors in her collection, which can be found on, are sure to make a statement in your nursery or child’s room. Create a cozy atmosphere with a distinctive pendant and shade that pairs perfectly with your crib or kid’s bedding. Complete your nursery oasis with a luxurious glider, made with custom piping detailing and sleek styling. I can’t get over the chic and sophisticated style of this collection and am so happy to introduce Annalisa Thomas as she reveals the inspiration behind Oilo and how she got started! It’s a great story of passion for your work and a focus on the important things in life; cultivating your bond with, as she calls it, your “little sprout”.


Annalisa Thomas, founder of Oilo, Husband Clayton and their Son & Daughter

How would you define the Oilo style philosophy?

Though not an actual word, Oilo’s roots are steeped in the Hawaiian words, “lio” (small sprout) and “ho’oilo” (the cool, rainy season).

Every autumn, the Hawaiian sun weakens and tropical trade winds usher in magnificent storms that blanket the islands in a cool, cleansing rain. It’s not beach weather. It’s curl up on the sofa with a good book weather. It’s wrap your baby up tight and rock her to sleep in the moonlight weather. Mostly, it’s about sitting back, relaxing, and enjoying the serenity of life. That is why Oilo exists. We’re about turning your nursery into the most comfortable, clean, and carefree sanctuary in your home. Because a more enjoyable nursery, means a more constant and enduring bond between you and your baby — or, as we like to say, your little sprout.

What inspired you to become a designer and start a business?

I’ve always loved art and design. Apparently my parents picked up on this pretty early because they put me in more art classes growing up than I could possibly count. I enjoyed fine art but it wasn’t until college that I found my true first love…

My first year of college I declared graphic design as my major not having a clue what graphic design really was, but it sounded fun. After a year of trudging through generals, I finally met the requirements to take my first graphic design class. We had to design a brochure and packaging for a “pretend” company. I loved it. I would stay up late researching my projects, which included things I had always loved—design, color, texture, all of which are deeply influenced by interior design and fashion, which I also love to keep a close eye on.

In graphic design there are pretty much two main roads you take out of school. The corporate world or the advertising agency world. I chose the corporate world. Most corporate jobs can be mundane for designers, but mine was filled with so many great design projects and I loved being involved in the business end, an area I came to love as well.  Looking back it prepared me well for Oilo, as it was a manufacturing company.

Five years later I was pregnant with my first baby. Although I knew my job would most likely let me work from home I always had wanted my own company and I knew this was my chance to venture out on my own. During this same time I was also researching designs for my own baby’s nursery. Although there are great designers out there I wanted something a little different. Before I knew it, a few sketches turned into fabric and fabric turned into crib bedding and Oilo was born. I quit my job and have never looked back.

What is your favorite part of your daily work when you reflect on the day, what is most rewarding?

I love when everything runs smoothly. I know… who doesn’t. But there’s nothing better than when all your suppliers are working together in harmony, all your customers are happy, nothing is on backorder and everything is shipping out quickly.

If you had to pick a favorite design from your collection, what would it be?

I love the Sticks Collection, the simplicity and the color. Because it’s practically a neutral color you can easily accessorize with bright pinks, tangy yellows or lime greens.

What sets Oilo apart from other designers in your industry?

At Oilo we design with the mom in mind. As a mom I’ve spent countless hours in my baby’s nursery. I want the nursery to be a place where I can close the door and find peace with my baby.

Do you have any news that you would like to share, perhaps about upcoming designs or introductions to your line?

We are adding a new design in a beautiful dusty pink! We’ve wanted to add pink for so long, but kept getting side tracked with other fun colors. This year we are sticking to it and are very excited about it.  We also recently expanded Oilo’s offerings to include  twin and full/queen size bedding in two of our popular collections.

Now…Just for Fun

Favorite TV Show: Modern Family

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