Love Anais

What’s your business called?

Love Anais

Can you describe it in one sentence?

UK based online retailer of the cutest baby brands from around the world!

When did you start it and what inspired you?

I started the business in June 2015 after giving birth to my daughter in December 2014.
I had moved away to Scotland with my partner (for work) and was studying for my law degree (final year) but dreamed of being my own boss. My daughter inspired me, the brand is named after her and she is the reason for everything I do.

How did you fund your start up?

Personal savings

How do you manage working around your children?

Difficult! I find it more difficult to work around her now than previously. When I set up the business she was 6 months old and not yet crawling, she is now very active so I work around her. I work when she is napping during the day and when she sleeps at night.

Can you describe a typical day?

Motherly duties 8am-7pm, 7pm-10pm = work: marketing activities- preparing materials to be published on the next day (during business hours), packing orders to be sent the following day, updating website, writing emails to suppliers and customers (scheduled for the next day).

What have you found hardest?

I found it hard to achieve the balance between being a new mum, business woman and full time university student. Starting up was much easier because when my daughter was smaller she would sleep more and stay in one place before she discovered how to crawl. But I found the balance when I accepted that it wouldn’t always be possible for me to work whilst my daughter was awake, so instead I play with her during the day and at 7pm I then work for a few solid hours, I found that these hours are much more productive than spreading the work across the whole day, it may also be because I know that if my tasks are not completed that night they will then have to be completed on the next evening.

What’s the best thing about being self employed?

Flexibility! Being able to enjoy my daughter and not resenting my job.

What are your plans for the future?

To continue expanding (adding different brands/styles) and to have a worldwide customer base within 1 year.

What advice would you give for someone just starting out?

Stick at it! It is so so worth it if you can wake up every day with a smile on your face.
Keep costs low when starting out, if you have friends/family who can help with anything (website creation, photography, marketing) then ensure that you ask them for help. Never underestimate the value of great customer care and building relationships with your suppliers.
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