Memories Gro

When you have twins, your whole working/career plans often have to go out the window. Here’s a good friend of mine’s story of how she has developed her business at home, with three young children, by turning your babies first clothes into lovely little keepsake dollies……

From Working Woman to Mum(preneur) of three in 2.5yrs

Memories geo dollies

In 2010 I was expecting my first baby. When I went on maternity leave from my position at the local council, as Marketing & Tourism Manager, just before Easter I couldn’t have imagined what the next two and half years would hold. When my eldest daughter was 13 months old I discovered I was pregnant again and when I went for my first scan, 12 weeks later, a surprise was in store. “Can you see what I can see?” asked the sonographer. “Well yes,” I thought, “but I am not going to say, in case you think I am an idiot!” But it turned out I was right, we were expecting twins!

We went down the corridor to the phlebotomy lab to have my blood tests and sat in the waiting room in shock. “Well, you’re definitely not going to back to work now, are you?” said my husband. We both knew that I was actually quite pleased about this. I had always wanted to be a stay at home mum.

But of course it wasn’t that simple. The plan had been for me to childmind when baby number two arrived, and I was qualified and approved already. That would keep a little bit of money coming in, in addition to my husband’s wage. But, and it was a big but, I was only allowed by OFSTED to look after three children under five years old at anyone time and now that quota was going to be filled by our own children!

Our twin girls were born in January 2012 and for many months my time was, unsurprisingly, taken up just by looking after the girls. As time went on however, I wanted to explore ways of making a little bit of money, but also wanting to use the skills I have. I have always been very creative and being able to make things is part of what I do for much needed relaxation.

Someone suggested to me that I should think about making keepsakes from children’s clothes. Looking around there were several people making animals from babygros but no one making Dollies. So I made some girl Dollies from my girls’ first clothes. Someone asked me if I would make Boy Dollies too, so I made up a pattern for dungarees. Boy Dollies have been just as popular, in fact this summer I had a run of about 7 boy Dolly orders with no girls in between.

I love what I do and I never tire of it, or of the customer’s reaction. One lady said she was moved to tears when her little girl’s Dolly arrived. Even though I am using the same pattern each time, each Dolly is different and I enjoy working out how I am going to use the garments I have been sent.

I also make keyrings or handbag charms embroidered with the child’s name and I have recently started making memory canvases which are formed from cut out shapes from the clothes to make a beautiful collage. I have ideas for other products which I hope to test and launch soon.

I work at lunchtimes, when the twins are having their nap and my eldest is having her quiet TV time, and also in the evenings. The girls having a good routine is what really enables me to do this. I have a work diary that I fill in as orders are paid for. It helps me plan and tell customers when to expect their orders. I blank out weekend evenings, time to do things for my girls or try new products and occasional weekends off. I think it’s important I have a bit of balance, but it also gives me a little bit of leeway should I slip due to sickness (me or the children!) or whatever.

I’m not sure what the future holds for Memories Gro, whether I will continue to make Dollies once my girls are all at school. For the time being I am finding it very satisfying to be able to be creative, make a little money and be there for my children.

I would be delighted to offer followers of Twinlife Online 10% when they order two or more Dollies. Find out more at www.facebook.com/memoriesgro

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