Yin and Yang: How do you balance work and family?
I’m currently taking a break from my career as I have a three-month old and almost-three-year-old at home. I fit this business in around my family schedule – I started the business working during my son’s (long three-hour) nap times, and late at night. My husband helps with the logistics and fits in this business around his career, and family commitments. At the moment, it is harder to find the right balance, as my daughter is only three months, and only really sleeps for 1.5-hour stretches during the day.
The Drive: What challenges have you overcome?
I guess the biggest challenge was finding a manufacturer in China who could help us. And my husband going over there to visit the manufacturers, see their ISO accreditation, see what their working conditions were like, and communicate our vision to them. The biggest challenge for us was when my husband travelled to China, and I stayed at home with my two-year-old son. I still remember that week felt like forever, and I was working part-time, picking up and dropping off my son from childcare, and Skyping my husband at night to go through the design markups.
For better or worse: What are the pros and cons of running your own business?
The pros are definitely seeing something through from start to finish, and knowing that we created this business from scratch. Even though we both have our own careers, there is a different sense of accomplishment and pride in knowing that we created this from nothing. Another big pro are the hours, as I work whenever I can, even if that means only three hours spread throughout the day.
The cons include not knowing how well the bag will sell, initial capital costs and not being able to use all eco materials up front due to MOQs
Hopes and dreams: What next?
We are currently working with our manufacturers towards making these bags even more sustainable, by using certified organic cotton, and recycled plastic zips, and are excited to see what the new range after this will look like. We will also be using sustainable packaging where we can, and will work with our manufacturers to achieve more sustainable packaging outcomes in the future. And a launch in Europe mid-year, as we will be moving overseas for a couple of years.