Personalise Your Child’s Belongings with Cute, Customised Name Decals

Custom Crafts NZ

In search of a creative outlet for herself after moving from Ireland to New Zealand, Charlotte Filleul was presented with an opportunity to take over a decal business. Using her experience as a mother, she added her own touches to the business, allowing parents to turn their kids’ belongings into cute little treasures with their customised name decals. Their gorgeous, decorative designs help avoid mix ups or confusion and add lots of fun. At Custom Crafts, their personalised decals will also help you turn your children’s bedroom into a cute wonderland, and they create decals for weddings, birthdays and homeware too! Here Charlotte talks to The Natural Parent Magazine about the passion behind what she does, the challenges she has overcome, and her hopes and dreams for the future.

The passion: What inspired you to set up your business?

In early 2020, we changed our bustling lives in Dublin to the laid-back vibes of Aotearoa New Zealand. Our initial plans of moving to buzzing Wellington were interrupted by the pandemic and we got stranded in a remote farming community in the centre of the North Island. There, my daughter Mika was born, and she enjoyed the protected and simple country life alongside her older brother Nova. Even though I was surrounded by pristine nature in a safe and loving environment, I missed my old life and felt very lost at times. I think we’ve all been there – we miss our old carefree, spontaneous, active lives; however, we cannot imagine our current lives without our kids being part of it. I had to discover my new “me” as a parent while being exhausted and struggling with challenges such as being separated from my family and friends, and figuring out being a mother whilst building a new community.

Eventually, I decided that what I needed was a space for myself and a creative output. Being productive in a creative way would enhance my wellbeing all while earning a small income.

The launch: How did you start out in the beginning? 

Initially, I felt nervous about the idea of building a business up from scratch. I feared I would run out of energy due to being a mother of a baby and a busy 2-year-old. I started researching and gathering information online. When I found Holly and her decal business, I was super inspired by her mahi and how she’d found a way to manage her creative business alongside a young family. She was looking for a buyer and I was looking for a creative challenge and money revenue. It was just perfect for me! Despite the initial fear of changing my family dynamics by becoming an entrepreneur and small business owner, I gave myself a push and sealed the deal with Holly.

The innovation: What was the biggest breakthrough for you with your business?  

Originally, the business’ focus was relying on decals for wedding and celebration signage such as welcome signs, table deco, glasses, photobooks, etc., as well as decals for kitchen and pantry organisation. Coming from my own experience as a mother, however, I see the value in organising things with labels. Especially my children’s belongings such as lunchboxes and drink bottles, which I label to avoid mix ups and frustration between them. Through that, my children have developed a sense of responsibility towards their belongings and look after them better which is lovely to see.

Hence, we have a great selection of labels in lots of fonts, sizes, and colours. Furthermore, I have started expanding into beautifying children’s rooms with wall decals and other signage which I really enjoy!

Yin and Yang: How do you balance work and family?

We now live in a cute little surf town, so I get to have a social life with lots of access to culture and beaches. My now 4-year-old is attending Kindergarten and my youngest is having fun with me at home. Since she doesn’t sleep during the day anymore, I usually do not find much time to answer emails, create decals, pack parcels and book couriers, so most of my work time happens after the kids go to sleep.

My husband is working from home for an overseas design company, which means due to different time zones, he is busy with meetings and client calls in our evenings.

So, balancing both our work and our family time requires a lot of energy, flexibility and a loving partner who has your back. Time management is key!

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