Mama gift box service Ovi and Reu’s Start Up Story

Ovi and Reu provide beautifully curated gift boxes for new and expectant mums, it’s not a surprise to find out that this business was started up by mums, three mums to be precise – one is even a grandmother. I’ve featured one of their Parisian inspired gift boxes and now I’m excited to share their Start Up Story with you. I found is such an interesting read and I hope you do too.

ovi and reu start up stories

We are Emily, Laura and Jean: two new mums and one new grandma who set-up in business together last year whilst Laura and I (Emily) were on maternity leave with our sons Oliver (Ovi) and Reuben (Reu). Jean is Emily’s mum and Ovi’s grandma. Gosh that sounds way more complicated than it actually is!
We are actually all teachers by training; Laura still teaches at primary level here in Bristol, Jean recently retired from being a Deputy Head in Hampshire and I left my job teaching secondary English at the end of my maternity leave in October. We try not to get sucked into conversations about ‘how to get kids into reading’ when in a business meeting otherwise nothing gets done…
Before teaching we managed to rack up a pretty impressive wealth of experience ‘doing other things’ including working in advertising, interior design, PR, The Civil Service…no one trick ponies here that’s for sure!
Laura and I live in Bristol; we think it’s one of the greatest cities in the world as it’s so brimming with life and design and it’s so family friendly. And Jean lives in Hampshire where she enjoys the rural idyll of village-life. So between us we have the best of all worlds.

Tell us a little bit about your business

At Ovi and Reu we provide beautifully packaged and letterbox friendly gift collections for new and expectant mums. Our gift collections are lifestyle themed so you can choose the collection which best reflects the preferred lifestyle of the mum that you are buying for – from Coastal, Country, Parisian or, for the mum-to-be, the Expectant Collection. We also have the new Highlights Collections which echo the three main lifestyle themed collections (Parisian, Coastal and Country) but are more compact and feature some of the most popular products from each. The Highlights Collections start at £35.
We are lucky enough to spend our working days seeking out interesting and beautiful gifts from British based companies to help make mums feel amazing. It’s all about celebrating aspirational lifestyle with your beautiful new bundle in tow.

 

What made you want to start up Ovi and Reu?

It all started in the early days of being at home with Ovi when I found myself answering the door to deliverymen on pretty much a daily basis. They just always seemed to rock up with an earth shattering bang on the door at the worst possible moments – just as I had settled down to feed Ovi, or do some expressing, or finally managed to get him (and sometimes even myself) off to sleep. It’s always so lovely and exciting to receive a gift in the post, but there’s nothing quite like seeing something slide magically through the letterbox and on to the mat where you can pad over to retrieve it in your own time and in any of the various states of undress with which I associate those early days of motherhood!
Once I got Laura and Jean on board things really took off – we loved the idea of sending out letterbox friendly collections of gifts which were all about celebrating the lifestyle that you envisage embracing with your new baby. If you were a cosmopolitan woman before you had your baby then you can certainly still be one afterward – hence The Parisian Collection contains gifts which a stylish urbanite would enjoy. Meanwhile The Coastal Collection is reminiscent of life by the ocean with the colour palette, scents and general vibe of the gifts enclosed.

Once you had the idea how did you go about turning it into a reality?

Well it all started out in a very civilised fashion with lots of long lunches and sketching and scribbling down ideas. In those early days the boys were still little enough that they would sleep peacefully through our long and rambling meetings. But as things became more serious we had to change the way we worked to suit having increasingly mobile and demanding little people in tow! Meetings had to move to after bedtime and became less about creative ideas and more about strategy and (inevitably) accounting and finances.
We took lots and lots of help and advice from the many talented and inspiring people in our lives and step by step we produced everything we needed from the logo, the website content, finding and sourcing the perfect letterbox friendly packaging and of course, finding the products from our wonderful suppliers. Eventually we found ourselves at a point where it was ‘now or never’ and we took the plunge in November and launched the website. Since then it has been a pretty fast learning curve and the look and feel of the brand has changed a lot in even these first few months of life as we have responded to our customers’ and suppliers’ needs.

Have you made any mistakes?

Ha! Yes. Several. And I’m sure we are still in the process of making some!
As I said before, it’s such a steep learning curve and just when you think you’ve got one element nailed, something else crops up that causes you to re-think that whole approach. For example we used to have lots of beautiful photography on our website that was all about illustrating the lifestyles that we want to celebrate but we had to cut all that out to become more product focussed in our look. There was a lot of time wasted there but hopefully we can find a place for that work further down the line.

Best thing about running your own business?

It really makes you appreciate the people in you world and how generous and inspiring those people are. Our company is very definitely a team effort – not just the three of us but our entire support network of friends and family who are a constant and invaluable source of help and support.
Obviously it is also amazing to work in your own space, in your own time, to your own agenda and on your own terms. That is absolutely phenomenal.

The hardest thing?

Getting the balance right between being in ‘work mode’ and ‘mummy mode’ throughout the day is really tough at times. Throughout the last year we have experienced the highs and lows of working during nap times, after bedtimes, before they’re awake, when feeding in the middle of the night and at weekends. Right now I’ve got one eye on the monitor as Ovi slumbers away and we’re often against the clock in that sense!

What inspires you?

The people we know. The world has opened up in the most incredible way since we have had children and it’s been such an inspiring and life-affirming experience. The other mums that we meet and hang out with on a daily basis are the reason why we are doing this; it’s all about celebrating our lives as they were before and as they are now. Also the incredible suppliers that we have met. The British design industry is a thriving and beautiful place to be and we just love having the opportunity to spread that love.

Any advice for anyone out there thinking of starting up their own business?

Get yourself a gorgeous new notebook (check out Studio Sarah for this!), find an inspiring place to go and sit for two hours (we love coffee shops or kitchen tables) and get scribbling. Then find a sounding board – whether it’s a potential business partner, a life-partner or your best friend – start off the way you mean to go on by listening to, considering and responding to the ideas of others.
Think about the people around you – what do they do and how might they be able to help you out. You’ll be amazed at how talented and generous people are with their time and skills.
But mostly, just crack on and have a go. I was given the excellent advice that the worst thing that could happen would be that I would fail… but that this is really the beginning, not the end of the process of living.

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Ovi and Reu have recently launched a gift box subscription service for expectant and new mums – because there’s nothing quite as lovely as receiving a letterbox friendly package of beautiful boutique goodies once a month for several months in a row. 

The three month subscription, which is called Bump, Birth and Beyond (£69 for three boxes), is intended to begin during pregnancy, with the Bump box being delivered before baby has arrived and the second two boxes being delivered after the new bundle has joined us ‘on the outside’. There is a combination of indulgent and beautiful gifts from boutique designers and suppliers, as you would expect from Ovi and Reu. And don’t fret – in case you’ve missed ‘The Bump’ window, there is also a two month option which is called ‘Newborn & Beyond‘ (£45 for two boxes).

 

I’m happy to share a discount code with you!

Use the code NEWMUMMY for 10% off your order

 

Ovi and Reu boutique gift boxes for mums

www.oviandreu.com
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Want to read more inspiring Start Up Stories? Just click on the image below 

Start Up Stories a series of interviews with parents that started up there own businesses

morganaMama gift box service Ovi and Reu’s Start Up Story
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From MumBoss to Start Up – what’s in a name?

I set up my MumBoss Interview series a while ago now and each business owning mum I’ve featured has inspired me, and I hope you’ve found their stories interesting too. I love the idea of promoting and supporting mums that have taken the step to start something of their own, whether it’s a small side business that fits around family or one that involves leading a big team and a massive budget, all are valid and I’m sure you’ll agree are bloody hard work. These women are not messing around and playing at being ‘businessy’, building a business takes grit and determination and often a lot of risk and that’s worth baring in mind.

I’m well aware that the term mumpreneur and now mumboss are contentious and even seen as derogatory and belittling to women in business and this was never something I’d want to align myself with. I wanted MumBoss to be empowering and never wanted it to be seen as belittling. I’ve ummed and aahed over the past year about changing the name of this category of posts that showcases mum led businesses but have struggled to find a term that wouldn’t end up as being just as reductive as the ones that came before it. As much as it’s good for SEO and keywords I don’t want to put anyone off from reading the stories of each of these mothers and their businesses just because of one word, or in this case, hashtag.

When reading Alice of More Than Toast’s articulately worded post, We Are Not Sodding Mumpreneurs, on her dislike of the word ‘mumpreneur’ and all the patronising comments and connotations that follow it I knew it was time to rebrand. Like I mentioned earlier, it took me a while to figure out what to change the name to, and in the end I went back to why I started this category and what it was all about. As I stated at the beginning of this post, I find stories of people that set up businesses since having children super inspiring, and it was their stories that I wanted to share. It’s not specifically about being a mum in business but a parent starting up a business, and with that in mind I decided to change #MumBoss Interviews to Start Up Stories.

So with that in mind, I hope to share businesses that have been started up my both parents as a joint venture, dad led businesses and of course mum led ones. So many businesses have been started up address gaps in the market that have been discovered since having children, honestly I could name hundreds, and these are the stories I want to share, whether it’s day 1 for that business of ten years down the line. There is so much wisdom and experience that I can’t wait to share!

Of course, it’s not just interviews I’ll be sharing in the Start Up category but posts about running a business, hints and tips, social media hacks and much more.

I hope you like and support this rebrand do let me know what you think in the comments, and if you’re reading this and have a story to share then do get in touch as I would love to hear it!

Read all the interviews so far here –

morganaFrom MumBoss to Start Up – what’s in a name?
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Interview with Tabitha from children’s clothing brand Lil’ Cubs #MumBoss

When my girls were little I loved dressing them in baby grows and little leggings with fun and bright prints, something a little different in a sea of pale pinks and blues. I wish that this month’s featured business had been around as I would have been one of their best customers! Tabitha the force behind children’s clothing brand Lil’ Cubs creates such fun prints for her 0-5 range, I’m sure you’ll love them as much as me. Grab a cuppa and read all about Tabitha’s business, how she started it and where she wants to take it.

I’m a mum of two boys, Huxley, 3 & Hugo 1. Before I had Hugo I worked for a contemporary art gallery in London for over 15 years!

Tell us a little bit about your business

Lil’ Cubs is a clothing brand for children aged 0-5 years. I specialise in fun prints focusing on bright primary colours. I’ve designed the babygrows with easy fastening zips because nappy changes are bad enough without the hassle of poppers!

What made you want to start up Lil’Cubs?

It was a whim really. I couldn’t afford to pay childcare for both of my sons and the commute on my salary so I realised that I had to find something else to do. I was on maternity with Hugo and started to think about all the blue in his wardrobe and how I wished it was different.

Once you had the idea how did you go about turning it into a reality?

95% of Lil’ Cubs was set up via my iphone whilst breastfeeding Hugo. I used the 45 minute feeds where you’re stuck in the chair to research factories, find design inspiration and made notes of what I liked and didn’t like etc.

Have you made any mistakes?

So many! The biggest one was my first… I gave my factory three babygrows from my eldest sons wardrobe to copy the size. I hadn’t taken into account the months of washing and tumble drying so of course they were much smaller than standard sizing. That’s why my Apple 0-3, 3-6 and 6-9m sleepsuits are all smaller than the rest of the collection!

Best thing about running your own business?

Being my own boss and seeing my ideas become reality. Oh and being at home with the boys of course.

The hardest thing?

Not having someone to talk things through with and knowing that all mistakes are mine! And cashflow. I have so many ideas and future plans but it’s going to take time.

What inspires you?

Currently I’d say the boys bedroom. I get inspiration from their books and all the wonderfully bright coloured toys.

Any advice for anyone out there thinking of starting up their own business?

Do it. Take the risk. If it doesn’t work out you know that you tried and it’s really satisfying being your own boss.

 

www.lilcubs.co.uk

Instagram | Twitter | Facebook

 

We’re super excited to be partnering with Lil’ Cubs and giving away a pair of their chevron print leggings (in a size of your choice, see Terms and Conditions below for size range) all you need to do is enter below and follow the instructions. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

Terms and Conditions
UK entries only
The winner will win a pair of Lil Cubs rainbow chevron print leggings – in a size of their choice (6-12 months, 12-18 months, 18-24 months, 2-3 years, 3-4 years, 4-5 years)
Giveaway ends 6/03/2017 at 11.59pm
When the winners are announced they will have 48 hours to get in contact, if they do not then another winner will be drawn
Any one that does not complete the compulsory entry will be disqualified.
The prize will be sent out to the winner by Lil Cubs

morganaInterview with Tabitha from children’s clothing brand Lil’ Cubs #MumBoss
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Interview with Vicki from teething jewellery brand, Bo&Bel #MumBoss

Last year I loved giving fellow mums with start up or small businesses a chance to share their story and give us all some business tips. There was just no question as to whether I’d carry on, it’s one of my favourite features and I hope you enjoy these interviews too. The first mum of this year is Vicki and she runs Bo&Bel a contemporary teething jewellery brand. I wish teething jewellery had been around when my two were babies. I hated not being able to wear jewellery in those early years, and having jewellery that’s safe around babies and actually helps them when they’re teething is a winner in my eyes.

Hello, I’m Vicki, Northern girl turned Londoner. 37 year old mum to twin girls Isobel and Phoebe. Mumpreneur.

Tell us a little bit about your business

Bo&Bel is contemporary teething and breastfeeding jewellery, which is for mum to wear and baby to chew. They are made from 100% food grade silicone and meeting EN71 regulations. I choose fun, bright colours and a variety of bead shapes to give mum the choice on what she wants to wear, as you would when shopping for fashion jewellery.

What made you want to start up?

Bo&Bel started out in 2014 after becoming a mum and going through teething with twins. I stopped wearing jewellery as they pulled my necklaces, broke them and this made me lose a little bit of identity. I came up with the idea of giving mums jewellery that was safe to wear, made them feel stylish and as much about mum as it was about their teething baby because I could resonate with how it felt to be a new mum and how important feeling special meant.

Once you had the idea how did you go about turning it into a reality?

Having the twins left me little time to focus on myself so the business was just an idea I wanted to get started but I was sensible enough to wait until they started reception class at school so I have every day 9-3 to concentrate on the plans. I used the time before launch to do plenty of research and building ideas so the business was ready to go when I was.

Have you made any mistakes?

I’m proud to say I have made mistakes and it’s helped me grow. You can’t know everything so you are always going to get some things wrong along your journey. I’ve had some great people to mentor me along the way, and finding them takes time and I’ve enjoyed the process of meeting people and have had so much good advice given to me. Women who have supported women with their businesses and together we are all growing stronger together because of it.

Best thing about running your own business?

Being able to run my business around my family is the biggest benefit. I can work in school hours and be there for the girls. I love updating my Instagram and seeing all the mums share their photos wearing the teething necklaces saying how happy they make them and baby. It’s great to start from the beginning and see your hard work grow and become what you dreamt it would be.

The hardest thing?

I’ve found that starting your own business means you have to be good at time management. It can be extremely time consuming, especially in the first year or so when you are establishing yourself as a brand. I have to remind myself often to take a step away to relax and recharge!

What inspires you?

When you have so much passion for what you do, be it motherhood or work, ideas flow and you enjoy the journey. Ideas for work come at various times and I keep a note pad by my bed so I can write them down before I forget by the morning.

Any advice for anyone out there thinking of starting up their own business?

You don’t always need a business plan or a bank loan to start out but do have a focus and passion for what you are trying to achieve. If you don’t have passion for what you do it will show and you won’t enjoy it. Learn from others and ask plenty of questions from others who’ve done it before you. Research, research and research before you jump in the deep as good foundation will get you further quicker.

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I’m so excited to be partnering with Bo&Bel to give you the chance of winning one of their necklaces. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

www.boandbel.co.uk

twitter | instagram | pinterest | facebook

 If you want to read more interviews in my #MumBoss series then just click here.

 

Terms and Conditions

UK entries only
The winner will win a Bo and Bel teething necklace of their choice, subject to availability
Giveaway ends 12/02/2017 at 11.59pm
When the winner is announced they will have 48 hours to get in contact, if they do not then another winner will be drawn
Any one that does not complete the compulsory entry will be disqualified
The prize will be sent out to the winner by Bo and Bel

morganaInterview with Vicki from teething jewellery brand, Bo&Bel #MumBoss
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Thinking about becoming a Social Media Manager?

Are you a blogger looking to make the step towards being a social media manager? It’s definitely something I’ve been considering recently. As an experienced blogger and social media addict I think it would be a good fit and a great way to apply the skills that I already have AND make money, obviously. It’s quite a daunting jump though and there’s still more I’d like to learn so I can be completely prepared and ready to take on clients.

I’ve been reading tutorials on Pinterest and researching courses to take. There’s such a wide range out there and they can be really costly. One I looked at was thousands of pounds and when looking at the content it covered lots that I already knew. I came across this, Social Media Manager Support Course run by Social Bods, headed up by fellow blogger Joanne Brady. Joanne is mum to four girls, and has been a blogger since 2011. She made the leap into doing paid freelance work in 2013 and now has a range of clients in varying industries from all over the UK. She lives in East Yorkshire and spends her free time enjoying watching TV in peace and drinking wine.

I particularly like that this course is aimed at bloggers like myself who want to make that transition into freelance social media management. Because of this the course does require prior social media experience and knowledge. At £200 it’s definitely a much more affordable course than lots of others out there.

Here’s Joanne herself providing a bit more info about the course.

Modules covered – 

  1. Finding and winning clients – How do you go about finding clients? What are the best type of clients to have? Are some clients better than others? How do you go about convincing them that you can do the job?
  2. Pricing, costing, and invoicing – How to price a social media job when they don’t have a budget? How do you produce a social media plan from a given budget? How do you keep track of time spent? How do you get payment from a customer in a timely fashion?
  3. Skills needed – What skills do you need to be able to manage social media for a business? How do you go about learning these skills? What skills do you need to be able to manage your workload effectively?
  4. Essential tools – What do you need to procure so you can get the job done? Do you need to pay for tools? How do you find the right tools for the job?
  5. Content creation and curation – How do you decide on a content strategy for your client? Where do you find good content to share? How do you find interesting things to talk about? Does a content calendar help or hinder you? What tools can be used for content curation?
  6. Reporting and stats – How do you justify yourself to a client? What stats do you need to keep track of? How best to present your data so your client understands it? What stats can you use?
  7. Managing your time off – How do you manage your work when you need to take a sick day, or a holiday? Are there any tools you can use to help manage your time away? Do you have a contingency plan?
  8. Professional and business development – Are there any courses which can be done to further your social media skills? What publications could you be reading? Should you think about certification?

I’ve been lucky enough to have had a preview of the first module and I found it so helpful. I took lots of notes and loved that because it’s a live webinar we were able to interact with Joanne while she delivered the course. You can type in questions or queries as you go along. You can even watch the webinar back afterwards in case you missed anything.

Dates –

The next course kicks off on the 20th of January, which is a Friday. Webinars will be on a Friday morning at 10am. There is NO webinar in half-term (w/c 20th February).

The eight webinars will be – 20th Jan, 27th Jan, 3rd Feb, 10th Feb, 17th Feb, 3rd March,
10th March, 17th March

Webinars can be watched back later if you are unable to attend a specific date but you MUST register for that webinar to receive the invite for the replay.

Pricing – 

£200 – no vat applicable

This is for eight modules with a weekly webinar and handouts, and includes ongoing membership of the Facebook support group.

The fee is payable in two four-weekly installments of £100 and payment can be made by direct transfer, or by Go Cardless.

To sign up to the course

Please email socialbods@gmail.com and we will add you to the roster for the next available course. Full details of how to pay, how to join the Facebook group, and the full webinar schedule will be sent back by return.

What do you think? 

Will you be joining me on this course?

 

 

Disclosure – I’m working with SocialBods to help promote this course

morganaThinking about becoming a Social Media Manager?
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Interview with Vikki and Dom from The Cake Tasting Club #MumBoss

You all know how much I love cake, right? Well combine that love with my love for small businesses kick started by mamas and you have a winning combination in my eyes. Introducing this month’s Mum Bosses Vikki and Dom, the force behind The Cake Tasting Club.

Cake Tasting Club

Hello! We are Vikki, mum of three/expert multi-tasker, and Dom, mum of strong willed two year old and tiny human/lover of all things cake and carb based! Basically we are obsessed with desserts and would always have double pudding when the opportunity presents itself.  

Tell us a little bit about your business

Our cheeky little business is The Cake Tasting Club (had you at cake right?!) which is a subscription based business delivering you surprise cake by mail in letterbox friendly boxes. If you love cake, and who doesn’t right (only weirdos) this is the club for you. We currently have three jazzy options of boxes – The Classic which is a mixed box of three bakes, The brownie box which is a box of three different brownies (or blondies) and the mini box for one which contains one generous portion of baked loveliness. The choice is yours kipper.

 

What made you want to start up The Cake Tasting Club?

Both of us have other businesses, Vikki runs a wooden toy business and Dom a local cake business and we met whilst showcasing our wares in a local pop-up shop enterprise. We clicked on our love of cake and felt our combined skills could create an amazing venture- the cake tasting club was born! Ta da!

Cake Tasting ClubOnce you had the idea how did you go about turning it into a reality?

Basically we were both so excited by the concept that we just did everything initially needed to set it up really quickly, banged the website out and got chatting it up on social media! The rest is history!

 

Have you made any mistakes?

Probably lots! But I think it’s all a learning curve, you just need to learn from it and keep pushing forward.

 

Best thing about running your own business?

The flexibility, being able to work the hours you can around other commitments. I think working in a partnership is also really great as you keep each other motivated and also you can eat lots of cake together- off cuts are the best.

Cake Tasting Club

The hardest thing?

We are both busy mums, so the time we have is limited it’s sometimes tricky to prioritise and use the time we have best because there’s always a million things we could be getting on with! Makes me think about all the time I had before kids- what did I do with it?

 

What inspires you?

Certain cheeky celebrities (I’m looking at you Mr Hollywood) no but really other amazing MumBoss business owners out there who are running all these amazing small businesses. I feel like we are in this lovely little community of support, everyone looks out for each other and there’s a real sense of a collective goal. Sisters are doing it for themselves! Oh yeah.

 

Any advice for anyone out there thinking of starting up their own business?

Just go for it and trust your instincts! I think planning is good but you can plan, plan, plan so I think just get going and learn along the way! The joy of running your own business is that you can break the rules. You can do it girl!

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As a treat for you, my lovely readers..

Classic Box is normally £15 but first box is £9.99 with code CAKETRIAL

 

tctc-black_white-logo1

www.thecaketastingclub.com

Facebook | Instagram

 

 

 

 

morganaInterview with Vikki and Dom from The Cake Tasting Club #MumBoss
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Interview with Danielle from Team Hen #MumBoss

I love sharing the stories of fellow mums that have worked hard to build up a business, and this month’s MumBoss I find particularly inspiring, she found a gap in the market and promptly set about addressing it. We all know that Hen Parties can end up being tacky when that’s all you see on the high street, well that doesn’t need to be the case. Team Hen creates and sells beautiful Hen Party gifts and accessories. I wish they’d been around when my Hen Party was being planned! If you’re getting married, or are being a bridesmaid then you really must read this interview and check out what Danielle and Team Hen offer.

team-hen-copy

Hi, I’m Danielle and I’m the founder and creative director at Team Hen. I’m married and have two children, Harriet (3 years), and Edward (15 months). We currently live in Milton Keynes, though started our lives together in London. My previous career was in IT in London, which I loved, but had to give up when I had my first child as with commuting and childcare, it just wasn’t a viable option to continue. 

 

Tell us a little bit about your business

I started my company Team Hen in January of last year. Team Hen offers a much needed alternative to the garish and tacky Hen Party paraphernalia so widely found on today’s High Street. We design and make original, on-trend gifts and accessories for Modern brides and their Hens.

team-hen-product-shot-2

What made you want to start up Team Hen?

I was organising my best friends Hen Party; when looking for gifts and accessories for the weekend it quickly became apparent our options were limited – everything was cheap, tacky and over the top. I designed and had made some some items for the event – and so Team Hen was born!

 

Once you had the idea how did you go about turning it into a reality?

I designed some badges and gift bags and had them made for me – I started selling on ETSY, and quickly turned a profit. I invested all profits into producing more items and new designs. In Feb of 2015 we were accepted by Not On The High Street, and the business really took off. We launched our own website in February of this year, and are now concentrating on building our brand in to a national ‘go-to’ for anyone organising a Hen Party.

team-hen-product-shot

Have you made any mistakes?

Oh yes! Where do I start! As the designer at Team Hen I have a very personal relationship with the products – we’ve launched one or two items that just haven’t sold (despite me thinking they’re great!) Luckily, we only launch new items in small runs, so it’s never been a disaster!

 

Best thing about running your own business?

I didn’t start my business to become a millionaire – I started the business because I needed an outlet for my creativity and passion. Being a mother is such a privilege, and don’t take it for granted – but I need to do something that fulfills my brain, and soul; Team Hen does that for me – my children have my heart. 

Also, its nice being able to work in your pyjamas (some days!)

 

The hardest thing?

The guilt – my children are still young, and are not yet at school, so we juggle childcare between grandparents and nursery sessions. They are both happy, content children, but the guilt i feel when I’m later than usual to pick them up because the postman hasn’t arrived to collect the days orders is horrendous.

 

What inspires you?

Other women, especially other mothers, running their own businesses. There are some unbelievably talented women out their, doing it for themselves – add a child or two into the mix and i don’t know how I, or any other mothers, do it. 

 

Any advice for anyone out there thinking of starting up their own business?

Fail Fast – Fail Cheap. By that I mean, if your launching new, untested products don’t buy thousands! Even if the margins aren’t great for the first run, buy small until the product is proven. A good margin counts for nothing if they don’t sell!

Also – don’t try to do it all. I ran the business alone for so long – whilst pregnant with my son and only took a 3 week break after he was born. Looking back it was ridiculous. My husband finally convinced me to take on some staff, and I’ve never looked back. We now have a merry team of 5 plus myself, who do everything from making our products to packing up the orders and dealing with day to day enquiries. Its a fab team and I love them all!

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I find Danielle’s story really inspiring and love the products that she creates. Team Hen have kindly given us a discount code, so head on over and take a look.

15% OFF WHEN YOU USE THE CODE

TEAMHEN15

AT THE CHECKOUT

 

team-hen-logo

www.teamhen.co.uk

Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Pinterest

 

 

 

morganaInterview with Danielle from Team Hen #MumBoss
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Win unicorns and celebrate Little and Fierce Kids turning two!

My little business, the online kids accessories store, Little and Fierce has been online for two years now! I can’t quite believe it really. Writing this blog and running my webshop while the girls are at school has been a dream come true. When I got made redundant after maternity leave back in 2011 I had no idea that five years later I’d be doing all this.

Of course there have been ups and downs and I’ll admit it’s been a steep learning curve! I’ve discovered some fantastic brands, both big and small and worked hard to curate accessories and gifts that belong together ans share the Little and Fierce vibe – a lot of colour, fun and of course some glitter!

I want to say a huge thank you to all you lovely readers that have popped on over and bought from my shop over the past two years, to all the bloggers that have supported me and even guest blogged over on the Being Fierce blog. I wouldn’t still be a shop owner if it wasn’t for you!

Now that Christmas is around the corner (eep!), there’s a whole section for Christmas gifts and stocking filler ideas, and they’ve even been broken down into price categories to make it easier to shop.

We are very well know for our range of unicorn gifts and accessories so when I put together ideas for a giveaway I just couldn’t resist making it unicorn themed! So to celebrate turning two we’re giving away these prizes, a Unicorn Tape Dispenser, Unicorn Stickers, Unicorn Hair Clips Unicorn Rainbow Pencils Holder, and Unicorn Nail Stickers. To be in with the chance of winning this magical bundle just enter via Rafflecopter below. Please make sure you read the terms and conditions before entering.

Win unicorns and celebrate with us!

 

win unicorns

a Rafflecopter giveaway

GOOD LUCK

Take a look on the Little and Fierce social media accounts as I’ll be running mini giveaways and sharing offers on there too, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

(Giveaway runs from 14th November 2016 12.00AM until 21st November 2016 12.00AM
The prize consists of 1 unicorn tape dispenser, 1 unicorn rainbow pencil set, 1 unicorn nail sticker set, 1 unicorn hair clip set, 1 unicorn sticker set
Little and Fierce are responsible for the fulfillment of the prize and will send it straight to the winner.
The winner will be contacted within 24 hours of the end of the giveaway, they will then have 48 hours and claim the prize, if they fail to do so another winner will be drawn
All entrants will be signed up to the Coffee Work Sleep Repeat mailing list and the Little and Fierce mailing list, this can be unsubscribed from at any time.)

morganaWin unicorns and celebrate Little and Fierce Kids turning two!
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Interview with Pamela from marketing company, AB FiftyOne #MUMBOSS

I’ve known this month’s MumBoss through blogging for a little while now, my home has even been featured on her blog! As soon as I found out that she was setting up her own marketing company I just knew I had to set up a MumBoss interview with her. I know lots of bloggers with marketing backgrounds and bloggers that want to branch out into marketing so I think this interview will be really insightful.

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I’m Pamela, I live up in Aberdeenshire (just north of the granite city) with my husband and 2 little ladies. I’m a marketer by profession but have also been blogging and vlogging for a number of years over at Life With Munchers and Roost Blog. After obtaining by honours degree from university, I went straight into the world of work and have had the pleasure of being a marketing manager and working with some rather exciting car brands and more recently an oil company.

 

Tell us a little bit about your business

I set up a content marketing company in Aberdeen, AB Fiftyone, after recognising that there was a natural shift from traditional to digital marketing happening and local companies didn’t necessarily have the in house resources to be able to harness this new potential. I help companies build an integrated marketing strategy for both offline and online that is tailored around how people are consuming content these days. Gone are the days when advertising was enough, now companies have to evolve to tell all, not only about themselves but what their product or service can be a part of.
Being able to not only help companies get online, but show them how best to have a presence and use every type of content available from written, video and even digital outreach to boost their message is very rewarding.

 

What made you want to start up AB Fiftyone?

The industry I was working in took a big hit in 2015 and huge cut back saw thousands lose their jobs. Had it not been for that, I would never have sat down and worked out a new direction. As I was a blogger, I could already see how national brands were using content and digital outreach to bolster their marketing and I knew it was a matter of time before this became a reality for local companies too.

 

Once you had the idea how did you go about turning it into a reality?

Thankfully I already had strong connections in the marketing industry and so getting up and running was daunting but exciting at the same time. I’m thankful that the tools of my trade are a laptop, camera and ability, so it wasn’t long before I was reaching out.

 

Have you made any mistakes or got any regrets?

I guess it’s too soon to say if I’ve made any mistakes as such, but certainly knowing who you can trust in business is a steep learning curve.

 

Best thing about running your own business?

The flexibility, without a doubt, is the best thing. I’m in complete control of the workload I take on and being able to balance this with family life is so rewarding.

 

The hardest thing?

The hardest thing has to be having the grit and determination to go out there and sell yourself.

 

What inspires you?

I enjoy what I do! Everyday I get to do more and more of what I love and that inspires me to keep going. I work with clients who I personally find exciting, interesting and energetic and couple that with a balance of family life and it’s like a dream come true.

 

Any advice for anyone out there thinking of starting up their own business?

Research…find out what makes you different and unique, especially if you are entering into a busy market. That and just having the belief that you are good at what you do. Don’t let what others are doing distract you from your own plan.

 

I hope you’ve enjoyed Pamela’s story and picked up a few tips.

If you have any questions leave them in comment or contact Pamela via social media.

 

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ab-fiftyone-marketing-logo-web-header1

 www.abfiftyone.com

Twitter | InstagramFacebook

 

morganaInterview with Pamela from marketing company, AB FiftyOne #MUMBOSS
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Interview with Steph from screen printing business Flat102 #MUMBOSS

It’s been a few months since I shared a MumBoss interview, so it’s time to get back on track. I’ve loved setting these interviews up with inspiring mums that run their own businesses and I hope you enjoy reading all about them. I’ve got lots of fantastic interviews lined up and the businesses vary in size, time they’ve been running, and the sector they’re in so there’s something for everyone and each are super inspiring. This month we have a creative business and mama to showcase – Steph and her screen printing business, Flat102. You lovely lot can get a discount in Steph’s online store thanks to her generosity! I’ve really enjoyed finding out more about Steph and her screen printing business and hope you do too. 

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Hi, I’m Steph! I’m 37 and married to James, Mum to Max and expecting a baby girl in 4 weeks!  We live in Buckingham after swapping London life for the country 18 months ago.  I had an amazing 10 years at Disney working in film marketing on some fantastic films, but while on maternity leave I made the difficult decision to leave my fab team and concentrate on family life while also pursuing my dream of launching my own screen printing business.

Tell us a little bit about your business

I originally set up an Etsy shop in 2011 as a bit of a hobby and creative outlet for the cushions and bags that I made of an evening.  The name Flat102 came from the number of the flat I owned in East Acton where my dream of one day owning my own business first started.  It wasn’t until I took an evening screen printing class that I discovered my passion and knew what I wanted that business to be.  I now create hand screen printed art in my home studio aka the garage!  The pieces of art I design and print are a reflection of what I love and would like to have in my own home.  Over the course of the next few months I am hoping to branch out and start printing home textiles.  Cushions, tea towels, napkins etc.

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Once you had the idea how did you go about turning it into a reality?

The first step was to bring my old Etsy shop ‘back to life’ and then with a lot of help from my husband turn half of our garage into a studio.  Having a dedicated space to work (and make a mess) has been a real turning point as it feels less like a hobby and more like a business.  Like many small businesses Flat102 is still very much a work in progress, but I am looking forward to some exciting collaborations and wholesale conversations that are happening.

Have you made any mistakes?

Yes! Too many to mention, but I try to not dwell on them and instead look at them as lessons learnt. 

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Best thing about running your own business?

The best thing is getting to do what I love while also being able to stay at home with Max.  After that it would be getting feedback from customers who love something I have put my heart into.  When that order comes in, knowing they have spent their hard earned cash on something I have made is a thrill that I don’t think I will ever stop feeling.  I love the process of making, having something tangible at the end of each printing session, after having spent so long in the corporate world I find this so rewarding.  Finally having the flexibility to work to my own timetable and the freedom to try anything is great.   

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The hardest thing?

The freedom to try anything!  I often feel completely overwhelmed by all the ideas that are swirling around my head and all the things I want to achieve, but I am gradually learning to prioritise.  I also struggle with self-belief…give me a product that someone else has made and I will market it like a pro for them, but for some reason I find it so hard to do that for myself and my own products.  For now I’m just faking it ‘till I make it!

What inspires you?

My inspiration comes from a huge range of sources…fashion, nature, my crazy boys!  At the moment I am inspired by anything striped!  I LOVE Breton tops and if you ask James he would say I have far too many!  I am also inspired daily by the amazing supportive network of women that Hayley Southwood has brought together in her Southwood Social Hub.  

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Any advice for anyone out there thinking of starting up their own business?

Just go for it and remember its progress not perfection that matters.  It can be so easy to compare yourself to similar businesses and feel like you’re not good enough, especially if they are well established.  It’s important to keep an eye on what is out there, but you are on your own journey so just enjoy it!

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I hope you’ve enjoyed Steph’s story and picked up a few tips.

If you have any questions leave them in comment or contact Steph via social media.

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HERE’S THE DISCOUNT INFO –

20% OFF WHEN YOU USE THE CODE

COFFEE20 

AT THE CHECKOUT

flat102

www.flat102.co.uk

| Instagram

 

(discount valid until October 21st 2016)

morganaInterview with Steph from screen printing business Flat102 #MUMBOSS
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