Why did you start the business? We desperately needed a new table and I suggested to my husband, Mark that we could make one. Before we knew it, we had bought the steel, found a welder to create the frame & my Dad gave us 3 planks of rough oak for my birthday. Somewhere during this process we costed it out in the hope of selling the tables. Making a prototype was not easy and took 6 months developing the plans & the costs – this was very painful but while Mark was working on that side, I started developing a website. The table is the heart of Ineko Home and once this stage was sorted we moved onto finding a range of products to compliment the table, all restored, handmade or reused. We invited my business partner and best friend Ann to join us to strengthen our team.
What’s has been the biggest Challenge? We’ve had many mountains to climb. Making one table wasn’t easy but it was easier than making a production run. No company wants to make a small run of 10 pieces. Eventually we did find a company that believed in us and liked our style enough to work with us. Building a website has many challenges too, even with help from a great friend, but after many hours, I’ve finally mastered how to make it work for our needs. The other challenge is shouting from the rooftops and getting people to buy. I post new images everyday, asking people to share in the hope of widening the audience but this is slow. We’ve only been online since Nov 26th so I will keep going and try new ways to reach the masses.
Is it easy launching a business with children? I work full time as a Design Director of a company based in London, designing childrenswear. I still love doing what I do everyday and have always worked having 3 children. I am used to juggling & never stopping still. I have to travel to the Far East & Dubai a few times a year too, which has never been easy with 3 children and with a new business now too it’s almost impossible. My children are getting older now, Harley-Jo is 18, Esme is 15 and my only boy, Cole is 13 years-old . A few years ago when the girls were in swimming clubs & training 4 days a week along with Cole’s weekend football I wouldn’t have even dreamt that I would have the time or energy to be doing this. They still have very busy lives, now it’s gymnastics, football & part-time jobs they need lifts to & from, but we seem to somehow juggle it around. One of our black & white statement prints in our range says
‘STOP WAITING FOR THINGS TO HAPPEN. GO OUT AND MAKE THEM HAPPEN ‘
We live by this ethos. Even if this doesn’t work out at least we’ve had a go at it. I want my children to have a go at things too.
Careers and children – what is the secret to your success? I have an exceptionally wonderful husband. I’m not being soppy but he is amazing in the kitchen. If it were left to me we wouldn’t eat and if we did it would be too late or burnt. The same with the mornings, they always had fresh chicken wraps for pack up and a lovely breakfast in their tummies. He owns the kitchen. He is in charge. I don’t have a cleaner and I like a clean house so do all the tidying, washing & organising. If my house is not in order, then neither is my mind. Even now when we have boxes of stock, bubble wrap rolls and pieces of furniture for photographs they are tidy boxes!
Has this always been your dream? I’ve always loved great photography and great interiors. I’ve always helped friends with ideas, storyboards & researching products but this doesn’t pay the heating bills. When the children were younger they were used to having my camera in their faces at every opportunity but when the teenage phase came my lens focused on either the back of their heads or the palm of their hands. So my subject matter changed with the times and my modest yet lovely period house became the subject. Was on-line retail always my dream ? Maybe not but I am enjoying this new dream and I look forward to seeing where it takes us.
My favourite Ineko Home products: