TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS, SWAGGIES.
Swaggies is a little business I run from home designing daycare bedding that is practical, lightweight and hopefully a little bit stylish!
WHAT MADE YOU START UP YOUR BUSINESS.
When my twins started in daycare their centre required them to bring a flat sheet, top sheet, pillow, backpack, change of clothes, drink bottles and hats. I tried to figure out the logistics of carrying all of this plus my two babies and wondered how many times they’d loose and I’d rebuy it all again! I figured most items would fit in the backpacks other than the bedding so I began looking for an all in one sleep mat. When I couldn’t find anything that appealed to me I decided to have a try at designing my own and so began Swaggies!
HOW DO YOU MANAGE THE MUM LIFE WORK LIFE JUGGLE.
Initially it was hard because my twins were only in daycare two days a week. My business is online which meant I was spending a lot more time than usual stuck on my phone or computer. Eventually I decided that this wasn’t fair to my boys and that they would only be little once so I decided to try and ‘earn’ the afternoons in the office by having trips to the beach or play-dates etc in the morning which usually meant the boys were happy to entertain themselves in the afternoon whilst I got my work done. Order packing would happen once they were in bed and usually would carry on late into the night. This year is a little different though as the boys have started kindy so I’m able to plan my days and be more productive.
BEFORE STARTING YOUR OWN BUSINESS, WHAT DID YOU DO.
I was a travel agent before having my twins. I’m so passionate about travel that talking about it, giving advice and selling it all day was a very easy role for me and something I really enjoyed. I finished up when I had my boys and spent the next two years adjusting to life with two babies. It wasn’t until they were two and things started getting a little easier that I really missed working and doing something other than ‘mumming’
THROUGHOUT YOUR JOURNEY, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY IS THE BIGGEST LESSON YOU HAVE LEARNT.
The biggest lesson I have learnt is that I can do it. Swaggies has grown from a random idea into a little business that I’m quite proud of. There was lots of times along the way where I wasn’t sure if I knew everything I needed too to run a small business and the truth is I still don’t but you’ll find support everywhere you look. For me that came from a lot of experienced Insta mamas who took me under their wing from the early days with encouraging advice and sharing my biz such as Stylish Kids Australia, Luxe Baby Love and Captain + Co. Their support and little high fives along the way is something I’m still very grateful for. I’ve spent a lot of time at my local Business Centre too completing courses and working with mentors, this is a government subsidised program and definitely worth accessing if its available in your area.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO SOMEONE STARTING A BUSINESS.
I think I answered some of this above. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help, whether that’s friends, family or other businesses online. Instagram has been really great, its such a little community and there are so many people on there dealing with the same juggle as you and they have more than likely been doing it for a lot longer so reach out!
Don’t be afraid to give your idea a try. As well as being a source of income running my business is something I really enjoy. I’ve always been creative and this gives me something to pour that creativity into, I love that time to myself in my office working on my biz. I think the balance of having a work life as well as raising the babies has been really beneficial to me and has made me a much happier person (most of the time!).
WHO OR WHAT ARE YOUR BIGGEST INFLUENCERS.
My biggest influencers are other small businesses you hear about in the news that just have a random idea and they turn that idea into a really successful product. I love how people see and solve problems. For example I heard recently about a heavily pregnant mum that took her toddler to the doctors and had to try and do the usual arm/head hold while the doctor stuck the paddle pop stick and the light in his mouth and she realised that this should be a simpler process. That the stick and light should be one tool freeing up another hand of the doctors. And so she created it! And its doing so well in Australia that she is now about the take on the US!
My favourite quote that sums this up and motivates me constantly is the below by Steve Jobs. “Everything around you that you call life was made up by people no smarter than you and you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use”
AND WHAT IS PLANNED FOR SWAGGIES FUTURE.
Now that I have more time to focus on the business I hope to grow it and make it more available in shops. I also hope to add new products to the brand and have one in its very early stages at the moment!
GET YOUR STALK ON.
GET YOUR SHOP ON.
Fancy winning your very own Swaggie of choice?
Then head over to @swaggies_au to find out how x
TOP TO FOLLOW.
@lovemyfindsau Following Tamara is like having someone constantly at the shops for you reporting back on things you might need but would otherwise have missed! Dangerous for the wallet but also these things are on sale so one balances the other right??
@luxebabylove Just a beautiful soul and an incredible product styler. Marlowes nursery is probably one of the most stunning baby spaces I’ve ever seen (almost tempts me to go back for one more!)
@singlemumdiaries I’m not a single mum but I find her honesty about being a mum in general really refreshing and she has lots of great bargain finds and beauty tips along the way
@dayinyourlifeproject I wish I discovered this lady when my boys were newborns!! Instead of doing the usual posed family photos, Row basically hides in your house and captures the little everyday moments. Not styled, mess and all. Ideally you book her to come once a year and capture how life has changed. I honestly can not remember that first year of twins and would have loved to have pictures of our day to day life then! Love looking at her images, she’s so talented.
WHAT MAKES YOU LAUGH.
Anything with Will Ferrell or Owen Wilson.
Rats tail haircuts.
Ben & Jerrys Cookie Dough Ice Cream with a glass or two of Sav Blanc watching Real Housewives of Beverley Hills whilst the rest of my house is sleeping.
SOMETHING YOU ARE NO GOOD AT.
Being organized or on time – I’ve given up on both
THREE WORDS TO DESCRIBE YOU.
Unorganised. Creative. Dreamer.