The sun came……..and it went again. Nothing new! On our coats hooks at the moment we have Sun Hats, Cardigans, Wool Hats and thick coats. We also have an array of waterproof jackets and umbrellas at the ready!
Have a look at these delicious little numbers for outdoor weather.
Cinderella Coat Baby Pink. This coat is also available in Raspberry
And one for the Chaps..the Peter Pram Coat, also available in Silver
In the early days, the key to dressing a baby is simplicity. The amount of times you have to change them means that no-fuss clothing are the best for baby and whoever is on Nappy Watch! Babatude have a lovely range of Baby Basics that are both practical and stylish made from pure organic cashmere and merino wool.
Babatude Two Piece Playsuit available in Lavender and Charcoal
Lavender Long Sleeved Romper Suit
Also available are Bo Peep Playsuits, adorable soft Dungarees and asymmetric fastening Mandarin Babygrows
I’m really excited that we have just added a new range of baby and toddler wear made from pure organic cotton and soft and light cashmere and wool. There isn’t a single item in this collection that I wouldn’t want, it really is gorgeous.
As this collection is so lovely I thought I’d break it down over several posts, so to kick off the collection is a range of Star Jumpers and Leggings.
I’m really excited to tell you that we are now stocking these gorgeous Mummy Necklaces by Poppy Sparkles. The necklaces are a unique way to celebrate being a Mum, a Gran or perhaps just because you like them!
My interpretation of these necklaces is that the pendent is representative of me and the charms represent my two children. The charms are the birthstones of your children and can be added to as your family grows. I have one of these beautiful necklaces myself and have had loads of comments. My Mummy necklace is a Swarovski Clear Heart with a Crystal charm (April) for my son and a Sapphire charm for my daughter (September).
These necklaces are a truly lovely present for any Mummy.
How about buying from small or independent retailers?
From City to City we all shop in the same cloned High Street shops, buying the same items. Now I’m not saying that there’s anything wrong with this and frequent my own local High Street on a regular basis. We all strive for our own style whether it be in our clothing or our homes, but where do you find ‘your different’? I love poking around small non-chain boutiques looking for gifts or something unusual.
Online shopping has opened up the whole world quite literally, but do you still return to well known brands and shops? Why is this? I’m sure for the most part this is due to the safety net in thinking that the bigger and well known the brand, the better the product, price and perhaps service. Better the Devil you know?
Since the birth of Baby Not Included, I try to buy from smaller Independent Retailers as much as possible to show my support for smaller business owners. My experiences have been absolutely fantastic so far and here are a list of pro’s for buying from Independent Retailers:
Great Customer Service – Need help? Can’t find something? Ask us. If you like us, tell your friends and family. We really do appreciate it.
Unique and unusual products – Majority of my best finds have been from small retailers for quirky and unusual gifts
We aren’t faceless – Unlike the High Street Giants, we do the majority (if not all) of the work ourselves. Meet us on Twitter or Facebook.
Competitive Prices – Don’ be fooled into thinking that you aren’t going to get a good deal from a smaller company.
These are just a few of the advantages of buying from smaller Independent Retailers. Fellow business owner Karen from www.allabouttheboys.co.uk is on a mission to get smaller Indpendent Retailers recognised. Pop over to her blog where you will find a list of fab websites.
Like many women looking to return to work after having children I found the process both daunting and depressing. All the jobs were asking for experience within the last five years and I had been a stay at home mum for eleven! So I decided I would just have to create my own work. All I had to do was come up with an idea. I knew I wanted to do something from home so I could fit it round my two kids (my taxi driving skills are much in demand) and the internet seemed to offer the perfect solution. All my research indicated that niche markets worked best online and I knew a niche that was poorly catered for. Whilst decorating my new kitchen I found it impossible to find the right shade of blue home accessories, everything was duck egg! So I decided to set up a website that specialises in blue home accessories and gifts.
When did you found your business?
I took the initial exciting steps last July when I took advantage of a free local government four day course in how to set up a business. The course demystified what was completely unknown territory for me and gave me the confidence to just give it a go.
What have been the main obstacles you have faced so far?
There have been many obstacles as I had to learn about everything from scratch but the process of enquiring and learning has been fun and the obstacles crumbled very quickly once knowledge was gained. I found the internet itself invaluable both for understanding the demands of ecommerce and for sourcing products. It is also amazing how helpful people are, suppliers will supply both advice and encouragement and other business are often willing to answer any questions you have. It is important to know your limitations and to hire professionals when needed. The Web Bureau who designed my website were great to work with because not only did they supply an aesthetically pleasing site but understood the importance of marketing. My advice when selecting a web designer is to approach three, get references and then don’t necessarily go with the cheapest but chose the one that seems to understand what you are trying to achieve. Don’t forget the website is not only your shop but has to project who you are so customers feel welcome and trust you. I really enjoyed the process of finding lovely pieces to sell but there are other more practical matters that demand just as much of your time, such as packaging, delivery etc. The biggest obstacle I now face is getting people to the site, so I need to master the dark art of Search Engine Optimisation.
What are your plans for the future?
I always wanted The Blue Label to be an enhanced shopping experience, so I want to develop further both ‘The Look’; which supplies inspirational images of professionally designed interiors and hopefully the customers own homes, and the ‘Featured Designer’; which highlights the work of local designers. In Britain we have a lot of very talented artisan designers; I want to give them a means of showcasing their work and also to offer my customers unique handcrafted pieces for their homes. I’m starting small so hopefully with time I can expand the range of shades of blue and the styles I offer.
What makes your business stand out?
The Blue Label is I believe unique in being the only website to specialise in blue home accessories and gifts. I have trudged the high street and trawled the internet so my customers don’t have to and brought together beautiful top quality gifts and accessories. I also offer a personal service that is both efficient and friendly, I hope my customers will call or email me if they can’t find what they are looking for or need any other information. I really want my site to be an enjoyable shopping experience, so all feedback is welcome.
To check out what The Blue Label has to offer Click Here.
We are going to be at the NCT (National Childbirth Trust) Pregnancy and Baby Fair on Sunday 29th May 2011, Somerset County Cricket Club, Taunton. 10.30am – 3.30pm
We attended the show last year and met lots of parents and parents-to-be as well as some lovely fellow traders. Last year was our first event so we weren’t sure what to expect. We crammed as much as we could fit into our car and off we went. I think this year I will concentrate on certain products, please feel free to make any recommendations in the comments section.
I feel quite nostalgic at going back as I was six months pregnant at the time. I will be returning this year with my eight month old daughter and chief helpers (Daddy and Ryan). It’s only £3.00 per family for entry. Here is a list of exhibitors and event: