The very lovely Anna & Sarah from U-ni-k are with us on the blog this morning to tell us about their selves and their business. Check out U-ni-k Gifts it really is a beautiful website http://www.unikgifts.co.uk/ xx
Who are you?
We are two mums, who after receiving all the mounds of gifts that you gratefully receive when your first babies are born, realised that what was needed was a trusted guide where people can find beautiful gifts that will be treasured by both parent and child. Together we combined our skills of 13+ years in programme management and 10 years of retail experience alongside style guru Maureen Doherty of egg and suddenly u-ni-k was born!
Sarah – Hi I’m Sarah the proud mother of Kathryn, the ‘DangerBaby’ who’s a Daddy’s girl already (*sigh*). I’m also a proud Aunt and Godmother, so I’ve been busy treating the special children in my life to lovely and precious keepsakes for too many years to count.
Becoming a Mum made me reconsider my 13+ years in project management, as I can’t imagine letting myself miss my daughter’s first words, steps or toothy smile while working on some minor IT problem in a faraway land. It was time to put my problem solving super powers to better use!
Over a cup of coffee with Anna and other Mummies, it became clear that I was not alone in my years of frustration of trying to buy decent gifts for the little people in my life. In fact I was lucky enough to discover I could knit while pregnant, so Kathryn was wearing Mummy creations and sleeping under Mummy knitted blankets from day 1!
Anna and I have been working hard putting together u-ni-k drawing on our different experiences and amazingly we’ve been on the same page from the very first meeting. We both strongly believe in high quality products that have been lovingly made by people who care as much about the finished article as we do.
I have a retail/fashion background working with Maureen Doherty, owner of ‘egg’ in Knightsbridge for the past 9 1/2 years. As I told Maureen when she first interviewed me, and asked me what I wanted to be- “I want to have my own shop and sell beautiful things like you!” My love of beautiful, practical things soon translated into Ida’s nursery and wardrobe. I was very lucky to receive many treasured things made with love, by loving hands when Ida was born. Yes, all the practical things that people bought were amazing but the true treasures were those special things that are so hard to find, for that new special person entering the world. I will keep these things forever and pass them to Ida when she is old enough to pass them to her babies.
That’s how we got here today. After many a ranting session with my mummy friends over many a coffee about the lack of originality and good baby gifts, Sarah and I decided that we could help promote those mummies who can make, while helping people go back to tradition and buying heirloom baby products that are kept for a lifetime rather than till baby grows out of them
What made you start your own business?
Two big reasons – so that I could stay with my baby while she was a baby and to help bring high quality gifts to other parents.
It’s something we have both always wanted to do.
What do you love about working for yourself?
At the moment we are always busy busy so have little time to ourselves what with our new babies…Kathryn, Ida, Sam and u-ni-k. But by doing this we also have been at home to be able to see our babies crawl, walk and hopefully talk! Ida is almost there with her talking….she’s a jibber jabber chatter box.
Doing this also enables us to support other Mummies & Daddies. Where possible we like to represent other parent makers so that they can stay at home and watch their children grow. Our newest Mummy is Helen Beard who had baby Yannick earlier this year. She is currently working on an exclusive range especially for us. She is one of our favourite makers. She hand throws and hand paints porcelain breakfast sets for us with hand painted whimsical scenes. Perfect for our Little ones. I have asked her to make a special set for Ida with her favourite toy painted on it, Mr Elephant. Something for Ida to treasure forever. We even have a grandparent maker- our Silversmith Mr Richard Ord who make our hallmarked silver pins.
Is there anything you do not like about working for yourself?
Obviously the constant worry of can we make this work. It’s not like a job where you are employed. If it doesn’t work you just get another job (hopefully). This is about making time for our children, our most important creations.
Also, the hours are crazy!
Is there anything you would go back and do differently if you could?