Dribble bandana from pearl button

Pearl Button – Making Handcrafted Children’s Products

Tell us your name and a bit about your family? When did you become a Mum and to whom?

Hi, my name is Jill and I have been married to Steve for 34 years. I am Mum to Hannah (28) and Joshua (25) both who are our pride and joy! Josh will hate that!
We have just become Grandparents this year to a beautiful granddaughter called Lyla (Son’s baby)

What’s your business called?

I plumped for the name Pearl Button for my business name.
Our daughter and I throw hypothetical names around for future babies that may come along……I loved Pearl, daughter said possibly not!…..but I argued she would be my little Pearl Button!
Business name was borne.

Can you describe it in one sentence?

Handcrafted baby/toddler traditional shaped bibs, burp cloths and dribble bandanas – beautiful fabrics, sewn with love.

When did you become a Mumpreneur and what inspired you?

A couple of my nieces were expecting babies and I did not want to give them something that was ‘run of the mill’. Having always sewn I decided to make them a pile of bibs, burp cloths and dribble bandanas. I also did not want them to look ‘homemade’. I had labels printed with my logo of Pearl Button, ordered wash care labels etc. Bought some fabulous fabrics and scuttled off to my sewing room. I did not tell them I had made them and a couple of months later got an call asking where did I get them as they wanted to buy some for friends who had loved them……they had Goggled Pearl Button and found nothing!
By pure accident Pearl Button was now very slowly up and running.

How did you fund your start up?

I was lucky that sewing was my hobby for ever anyway…..lots of quilting, dresses for daughter when she was small etc. I had my sewing machine and always a keen eye for a lovely fabric – Liberty of London being just one of the designs I love!
How do you manage working around your children?
Our ‘children’ are grown ups now and are very proudly supportive of my venture – as is Hubby.
I work during the day and sew when I get home – for me it’s the perfect way to unwind.

Can you describe a typical day, what tasks do you have to get done, how do you manage your time?

By day I am a full time Receptionist – By night I am Pearl Button!
My Pearl Button day starts when I get home around 5:30, walk the dog and then head in to the sewing room.
My orders are mainly via FB or the market I attend and these are then logged on my white board in the sewing room.
One evening I will cut up the fabrics and pin together the orders, next evening I will sew, turn and press, next evening will be top stitching and labels etc…….inspect and wrap in tissue for posting.

What challenges have you faced in your business and how have you overcome them?

For me, confidence and self belief has played a big part in starting to put my products out to the public. Having only sewn for friends and family it was quite daunting to hand over something that I had emotionally invested in. I started to do small craft fairs and was so scared! This was the beginning of testing my products and place in the market. I now regularly attend a monthly market in Surrey and have regular customers that order for themselves and as gifts for others. I have learnt that confidence comes with experience, but it is very scary.

What’s the best thing about being Mumpreneur?

The pride of knowing you have made something you love and that others love it too.
I suppose for me it is such an emotional investment and for others to validate it by ordering and buying, this does mean so much.

What are your plans for the future?

To hopefully enjoy the journey and continue to grow.
Build contacts and learn more about how to grow successfully.
Sort out a website!

What advice would you give for someone just starting out in business?

Think about your target market, make contacts, ask family and friends their opinions
Do not be scared of people laughing at your ideas – if you believe in it – Go for it!
Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?
I am so proud to be a collaborator with Taylord Bundles – Caz received a Pearl Button bib as a gift for her new little boy and loved it.
To be part of a team that handcraft so many beautiful items, it’s brilliant to have such a supportive team to work with and learn from.