What was the catalyst for you launching your business?
I always knew I wanted to have my own business but I just never knew what it would be. I grew up surrounded by small business, as my Dad had his own consulting firm, my brothers had both started their own business, and my boyfriend (now husband) also ran his own small business- so I felt really inspired by the freedom and flexibility they seemed to gain from running their own show.
One of my close friends, who was an upholsterer & interior designer, came to me with the idea of upholstering artwork on to bed heads and asked if I wanted to be her business partner.
As a coveted fan of the monthly glossy interiors mags, I didn’t think about it too much and instantly said yes!
What do you love most about what you do now?
I love the freedom of being able to shape what my day looks like. Generally I am up at the crack of dawn and on my yoga mat, and then working late into the night – BUT if there is a special yoga class that I want to take in the middle of the day, or I am desperately craving some time out in the park, I have the flexibility to be able to go and do that.
I also love the variety of each day. Everyday I am learning new skills and applying them to all sorts of situations – from product design to marketing & PR, event planning, sales and a heap of other stuff! With learning new skills comes meeting awesome like-minded people who are just as passionate about start-up business as well.
With all of that said, my absolute favourite part of the day is when customers receive their new bed heads and send in photos and write emails telling us how much they love their new bedroom. It never gets old and always makes me smile!
Describe the biggest setback you faced when establishing your business? How did it affect you and how did you push through?
Our biggest set back is definitely the cost of product development. As our primary focus is product innovation, we spend a really large chunk of money on developing (or trying to develop) the kazillion product ideas we have floating around in our head! Sometimes our grand plans don’t turn out as expected and we have learnt that the hard way…2 trips to India and 25K later!!! Wowsers it hurts me just to write that!
It really did suck when we had tallied up how much time, effort & money we had put into an awesome product idea that didn’t eventuate, but we did learn really valuable skills along the way and got to meet some amazing people whilst eating some pretty delicious Indian food! The next product idea is never far from our minds, so when the opportunity arose for us to develop our mass customisation site, we were all over it! The failed product attempts swiftly subsided to give rise to the possibility of new things!
Everyone has days where they feel flat or uninspired - do you have any tricks or tactics for overcoming these feelings?
Sure do! I love listening to entrepreneurial podcasts, chatting to my business partner about whats on my mind & taking myself off for a walk with a coffee. Doing yoga and meditation are also a really big part of my life and help centre me. If the day has been really bad, I absolutely love walking in the park with my husband whilst we watch our dog jump around and run amok – her energy and simple joy instantly makes me feel better!
What has been your most effective marketing tactic or strategy?
Our presence on Instagram really helped us early on. We had a few influential stylists from magazines reach out to us to loan a bed head for a photoshoot. Contestants from The Block Shannon & Simon saw our bed head in the magazine, and then wanted one for their apartment on the show!
Words of Wisdom / Personal Quote
“If you never ask the answer is always no.”
I also try to live by the mantra “What would you do if you had no fear, where would you go and what would you say.“