Running a Small Business
Babies and toddlers, they can get through more daily wardrobe changes than an A-lister at a photo shoot. I did what I could, I used second hand clothing and passed on or donated the items that no longer fit but I still felt I wasn’t being as sustainable with the sheer number of outfits that we were getting through. After a few rounds with my son some of the clothing wasn’t even suitable to be worn again and there we have it, clothing sitting in a pile destined for landfill because of a stain, a rip or a hole unless I miraculously found time to repair or patch it. Even with all good intentions I never seemed to find the time. I had an infant that didn’t seem to sleep more than 45 minutes at one time who grew into a rambunctious toddler (who still never wanted to sleep).
The feeling that I was adding to the environmental issues that will plague my son’s generation even more than it does now didn’t sit well with me and thus my journey into entrepreneurship began. I wanted to start a company that made infant and toddler clothing as sustainably as possible and then welcomed the clothing back once the little one was finished with it regardless of condition for repair, repurpose or textile recycling if truly the material couldn’t be used for anything else. That basically is the foundation of Bamboo Birdie.
Although I had no hands on experience of entrepreneurship I do love a challenge and problem solving. I found pretty early on that even as a ‘solopreneur’ I was not on my own. The small business community is very active and organizations such as Small Business BC and The Forum offer the most incredible resources, learning opportunities, expertise and networking to help a person at any stage of their entrepreneurial journey.
My learning curve has been huge and I have to reign myself in sometimes with the vision of the future and where I want to take my business. I am the mom of a 4 year old, working full time to earn a steady income while working on developing and growing my business from the ground up in the evenings and weekends.
Did I think it would take this long to get established, of course not, I wore rose-tinted glasses and presumed that a number of parents would feel the same way I did (but how do I find those people?).
I didn’t want to use fast fashion to dress my little one and contribute to the environmental issues of the industry (but I certainly have so no judgment from me!). I didn’t want to send fabric to landfill because of a tear or stain. I wanted to give parents the ability to purchase well-made clothing that offered planet friendly options after use and also provide a platform to share any green living tips I came across. Bamboo Birdie was born. I have been working hard on what that would look like from a family perspective and a green-living, sustainable standpoint. I will have some truly exciting developments to share in the next couple of months.
Having support from small business networks, my career coach Lindsay at Lindsay Baker Coaching and my business mentor Nadia (who I was paired up with through @theforumca) has been instrumental in helping to keep me on track and working towards my goals. Building the Bamboo Birdie community is so important to me and is the leaping off point for future initiatives to come.
If you want to keep up to date with all the fab plans I have in store subscribe now I can’t wait to let you know what’s in the pipeline. I would so appreciate it if you could share this blog with others you may know that would want to support my business either from having little ones in their lives (parents, guardians, grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends…) or who are interested in business investment and crowdfunding opportunities.
Here’s to sticking to your path, forging ahead (even if it means taking a step back) and never giving up.