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Juniper Studio create bespoke keepsakes, gifts and decor. With a passion for treasuring the small things in life, they pride themselves on sustainability, crafting keepsakes for families to look back on and treasure for generations to come.

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Georgina Robinson is the founder of Juniper Studio, who create bespoke keepsakes, gifts and decor. She has a passion for treasuring small things in life, and she prides herself on sustainability and crafting keepsakes for families to look back on and treasure for generations to come. 

Georgina and I speak a lot about her products, her inspiration, and how she is making her business more sustainable and reducing its environmental impact, including using a Shopify app which means a tree is planted every time Georgina receives an order. 

Listen in to hear Georgina share:

  • An introduction to herself and her business (00:55)
  • How she started her business (02:03)
  • Working with Not On The High Street (02:57)
  • Using content creators to help with social media marketing (06:18)
  • Managing her time (08:13)
  • Creating her products (09:53)
  • Making her business more sustainable (14:42)
  • How small businesses are leading the way with sustainability (29:51)
  • Her number one piece of advice for other authors (31:43)

USEFUL RESOURCES:

Juniper Studio Website

Juniper Studio Instagram

Juniper Studio on Not On The High Street

Greencast

Tree Nation Shopify App

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Transcript
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Welcome to the, Bring Your Product Ideas To Life podcast, practical advice,

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and inspiration to help you create and sell your own physical products.

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Here's your host Vicki Weinberg.

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Today, I'm talking to Georgina Robinson from Juniper Studios, Georgina creates

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bespoke keepsakes gifts and decor.

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She has a passion for treasuring small things in life, and she prides

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herself on sustainability and crafting keepsakes for families to look back on

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and treasure for generations to come.

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Georgina and I speak a lot about her products, her inspiration,

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and as always, this is a really useful and interesting episode.

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So I'd love now to introduce you to Georgina.

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Say hi, Georgina.

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Thank you so much for being here.

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Hi, thanks for having me.

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Oh, you're so welcome.

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Can we start by you please by you giving an introduction to yourself, your

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business and what you create and sell.

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Yeah, sure.

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So, um, I am Georgina.

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I am a mom of one.

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My business kind of started really, um, all of my product business kind of

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started after having our little girl, um, but I'm a graphic designer by trade.

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Um, I used to do, um, freelance graphic design essentially, and then now

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have moved into a product business.

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So, um, Juniper Studios, um, I started out by doing, uh, illustrations,

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um, but now have branched out into kind of personalized keepsakes,

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um, gifts, birth announcements, um, things like that really.

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Oh, that's amazing.

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And I haven't, I haven't honed my elevator pitch yet.

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Can you tell?

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You don't need to, you can take, you know, what it takes time

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and it would change as well.

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So it change and evolve, but that's great.

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And I had to look at your website and I absolutely love the drawings

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you do from people's photographs.

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I think they're, I don't know if drawings is the right word.

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Apologies if I use the wrong terms now and again, but, um, yes.

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Yeah, that's, that's what I started with really.

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So, um, after having a little girl sort of six months, she was about six months

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old and I just thought, oh, I need, I need something to kind of get my mind

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back ticking back into kind of design.

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And I was always just planning to go back to doing freelance design.

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Really.

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Um, I started doing these illustrations.

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They were picked up by Not On The High Street um, and it kind

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of just went from there really.

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Um, and then I just got to the point where I realized that I'm not able to

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scale really that business because it relies on me and my time, um, completely.

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So, um, Then chose to kind of make the leap and make an investment in some

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machinery to be able to create more personalized rather than bespoke stuff.

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Um, so yeah, and then that's where, that's where I am now really.

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But yeah, the illustrations was the start of everything.

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So, um, portraits, house portraits, pet portraits, anything.

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And how did you get picked up by Not On The High Street?

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How did that come about?

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Um, so it was a friend of mine who used to work for them, um, and she said, oh, you

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should just, you should just go for it.

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And, um, I kind of dropped a message and they were like, yeah, apply.

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And then I went through the application process and first time got accepted and

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I was like, this was like in my five-year plan was get on, Not On The High Street.

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So, and I did it within about three months.

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So I was freaking out a little bit.

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And yeah, it's, it's gone from there really with being

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in a few of their campaigns.

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So they selected me to be in a mother's Valentine's campaign

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last year, Christmas campaign.

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Um, and that's when it goes really nuts, but yeah.

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Oh, that's amazing.

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And was that with your bespoke illustrations or with the

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more personalized products?

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Yeah, so that was where I was just doing the illustration.

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Um, and then I'm putting more and more, I've kind of, sort of left,

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not on the high street, really ticking along with the illustrations.

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Um, just from a commission perspective, there's a lot less

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margin in the personalized, um, items.

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So it's quite, it can be quite tricky, um, to, with the, with the amount of

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commission that they do take on sales.

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Um, so I've got a few things on there that do quite well on the personalized

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side of stuff, but I have left.

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A lot with the, with the illustrations, to be honest, I'm not in the high street.

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Yeah.

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I've never sold or not in the high street myself, but I've had that.

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The commission is quite high.

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Yeah.

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I don't know if I'm allowed to say so.

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I don't know.

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I don't know why if but I'm not, I'm purposely not asking you.

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Cause I don't know if you're allowed to say, and I would rather not ask,

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not put you in that position, but I've heard it's quite high, I guess

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it makes sense that if, I mean, it's also a margins as such, because you're

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creating a product yourself, but I guess with maybe things that take a little

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while and don't have a very high price.

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It possibly isn't worth not want to say isn't worth it.

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You know what I mean?

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I guess it might not work as well for you as selling that same product

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on your website or an Instagram.

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Exactly.

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I mean, so take into account like the cost of wood and then rising

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cost of electricity with the machinery and then cost of postage

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and packaging once you do all that.

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And then I would have to put the personalized stuff on,

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Not On The High Street at different price point, basically.

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Um, so it's just weighing up whether, whether to do that or not, and making

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those decisions or taking a bit of a hit on margin, but with the cost of everything

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at the moment, going a bit crazy.

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It just, I just need to review everything constantly and it's,

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it's just a bit exhausting to have them on so many different platforms.

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So I've just, so my, the bulk of my sales come from my Shopify site

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and I drive them from Instagram.

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Um, and a little bit of Pinterest when I get the time and PR when I get

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the time, um, But, yeah, so I've just gone on to Etsy as well, actually,

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basically just to use their IOSS number, to ship abroad, um, to take

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a little bit of the admin out of it.

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Um, so.

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Having to update listings and pricing and all these things on all different

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platforms when it's the business is still just me at the moment.

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So it's just, yeah.

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Part of it's an admin time issue, but yeah.

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Part of it's margins issue.

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Yeah.

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I guess that makes sense.

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When you talk about the time and managing listings, because obviously the products

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that you produce take your time as well.

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Yeah.

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So it's, it's a weigh up between actually setting time aside, like to

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say, actually this is an admin day, or this is a marketing day, like creating

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content, doing product photography.

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Um, I do, I still do most of all of that myself.

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I occasionally outsource photography or I'm very lucky to have some

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lovely relationships with some fantastic content creators.

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Um, On Instagram, who, who I either pay to create content or they create content

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in return for gifts, for their children.

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Um, so that, that can take some time off of my plate, but yeah, it's it.

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And then.

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The orders come in and then the more marketing you do

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and the more orders come in.

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And then it's a, it's a, it's a perpetuating cycle, but a

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nice one to have, obviously.

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Yeah, definitely.

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And I'm guessing that the very bespoke orders, so the illustrations

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probably take a fair bit of time.

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I'm not asking you to tell me how long they take, but I mean, I'm

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assuming they did take more time than say a personalized product.

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So I guess, am I right in thinking that for your personalized products, the

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basis of the product is there and then you're adding the personalization to it.

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Yeah, absolutely.

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So the bespoke illustrations definitely take longer.

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Um, and the, the time, I guess, in the personalized stuff is

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in the initial design process.

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Um, although it still does take time.

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So some.

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Some businesses that produce similar items to myself, um, will not sand

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them for example, afterwards, because they prefer the look of, of, of a burn

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or they just decide that actually, this is how our product's going to be.

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I hand sand every single item just because that's how I want mine to look.

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And that's how I want to present mine.

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I hand pack everything.

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Everything's checked everything.

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Yeah.

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So it's still quite time consuming the personalised stuff, but yeah, definitely

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less than the bespoke illustrations.

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And how do you manage to have all of the various jobs you have to

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do in terms of keeping on top of listings and marketing and creating

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and producing products and packing.

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Do you have some sort of schedule for that or is it fitting it in, when you can,

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I should, I should have a schedule I think.

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And I did, I actually did some, um, some, I had, I did some sessions

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with a coach, um, last year.

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And, um, we did speak about sort of setting time aside for

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things and, and stuff like that.

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But, um, no, I've kind of fallen back into bad habits with that.

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Basically my, my daughter, our daughter is in nursery three days a week.

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Um, I can't do the making and packing orders with her

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around she's two and a half.

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It's just not possible.

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Um, so I tend to in nursery days, I'll have meetings like this

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one or with, with clients cause I still do design work as well.

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Um, and do all the things that I can't do when she's around.

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And then I tend to do the more admin stuff in the evenings, to be honest, it's, it's

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definitely not a nine to five gig this

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It is a lot to juggle isn't it.

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Yeah

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A lot of parts to think about.

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Um, if you don't mind going backwards a little bit, I'd love

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to talk about sort of how you got started creating the illustrations.

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You mentioned you started illustrating after your daughter was born

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on, I know that your background obviously was in graphic design.

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So just be really good to talk about how and why you started with the illustrations

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and how it's grew into a business.

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Yeah.

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So, um, it was just fun.

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Really.

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Um, my husband bought me an iPad pro and the apple pencil for my birthday.

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Um, and I just started playing around, um, drawing things for family, for

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friends, for ourselves, um, and just sort of showing people and

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drawing friends families or whatever.

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And they'd like, you should probably sell these, like give it a go.

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So being from a design and web design background, I thought I'll stick a

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website up and take some photos and put them on Instagram and see what happens.

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Like the investment wasn't huge for me because I could do it all myself

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and I was on maternity anyway.

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So it sort of was a bit of an activity to just kind of keep my brain ticking

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over that I was really loving.

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Um, so I stuck them out there and yeah, they just kind of started to sell people,

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started to follow me on Instagram and say that they liked them and shared

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them with friends and yeah and it just kind of organically went from there.

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Really.

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And then, like I said, Not On The High Street, um, came about and, um, the,

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I think it was Valentine's day, last year that it really went a bit crazy.

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And because I was in the campaign and that was the point at which I was

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like, I need to change this business because I can't physically draw any

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more than I have done this month.

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And that peak income is not gonna be enough long term.

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Um, so that was when I kind of made the decision to move into more personalised.

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I was about to ask about that decision.

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So thank you for explaining that.

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And, um, yeah, and I think that definitely makes sense, because as

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you say, when you're doing things that rely on your time, I guess there's

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only so many hours you've got you can't double the hours you have in a day.

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Yeah, especially with, um, limits of child care as well.

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Um, that's, that's definitely a big player in the decision.

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Um, but also the fact that with the Perth, with the personalized products, as a

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designer, I can still design those but long term longer term, probably hopefully

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by the end of this year, I can have, I could have people working for me that can

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change the name and create the product to my specifications of how I've been doing

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it with me still doing the initial design.

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Um, so it doesn't rely completely every single product on me

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designing, making, drawing.

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Um, so yeah, much more scalable.

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Yeah.

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That does make sense.

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Cause you're right.

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I think there definitely would be parts of the process.

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You could start to outsource further long, um, so can you explain your personalized

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products a bit for people who obviously I've, I've had a look at a website and

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I'm hoping everyone listening was going to go just until it's going to go and look at

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your website for anyone who hasn't done.

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So yet, can you just explain a bit about your personalized

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products and what they consist of?

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Yeah, so, um, most of them, um, are, uh, engraved plywood,

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um, with different designs.

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Um, so a lot are around new babies.

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Um, pregnancy announcements, gender announcements, birth announcements,

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then a lot of seasonal stuff as well.

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So, um, at Christmas, um, personalized Santa stop here signs.

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So it again, engraved onto wood or, um, cut out of acrylic and stuck onto

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wood or, but just very minimal design.

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Um, And what else?

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Things like, um, Santa's magic key with the name of the hat of

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the child and name the house.

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And then this Easter I've got personalized Easter baskets.

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Um, yeah, I don't know.

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I need to refine this.

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No that was good thank you and I just think is even a really

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clear what you're talking about.

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And when you talk about perhaps, you know, it's something down the line that

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somebody else could put the name on, for example, you know, you've done all

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the prep work and then somebody else can actually put the names on for you or

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whatever it was if we could get helps, give people an idea of, yeah, sure.

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We have a laser, we have a laser engraving machine, um, and essentially.

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It's essentially printing onto wood, but using laser instead of ink.

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Um, so it burns into the words, um, or it can cut acrylic.

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It can engrave acrylic.

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Um, but to be honest, I try and keep it with word just because it's more.

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It's a more sustainable, renewable, um, renewable material.

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Although when I do use acrylic, I use a company called Green Cast, um, and

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that acrylic has made completely of a hundred percent recycled materials.

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So, um, this.

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Better, but yeah.

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Thank you.

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And since we've just touched on sustainability, I'd love, if you

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could also talk to us a bit about your sustainability policy, because when I,

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um, read through it, it seems to me that you've put so much thought into that.

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So I think it'd be really nice if you could just share how you came up with

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it and what it means for your business.

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Yeah.

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I think policy is a bit too much of a grown up word for whatever, anything in

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my business at the moment, to be honest.

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Um, but yeah, for sure.

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It's just, I think the essence of it is just thoughtfulness, um, and intention.

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So making sure at the base at the basic level, it's trying to source,

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uh, raw materials sustainably.

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Um, so all the wood we use is FSC certified and sustainably sourced.

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Um, all packaging is plastic free, um, and recyclable and hopefully

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made from where possible made from recycled materials as well.

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Um, um, It's it's hard sometimes with suppliers where you have to buy something

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from them because it's specialist and it will come in plastic or it will contain

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plastic, or it will contain something that's not recyclable or compostable.

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Um, and that's why I took the decision to actually plant a tree for every

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item in every order, um, to hopefully offset some of that, uh, Yeah.

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Some of that, uh, environmental impacts that my business inevitably has.

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So even just down to shipping, like it's fuel it's yeah.

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There's a, there's an environmental impact of that.

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Um, and the other side of it is just.

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Being intentional with my design.

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So not putting years on things.

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So things can be reused in years to come.

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I'm not making something so on trend that it will be obsolete in

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three months or a year or two years.

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It's something that a family can keep and cherish.

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And if not, if it comes to the point where um, the kid doesn't believe

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in Santa anymore or something.

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Um, and they don't need it.

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They pop it in a memory box or they can recycle it.

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So it's not going to leave a lasting impact on the planet.

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Um, so yeah, it's just about intention and thoughtfulness is

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the crux of it, to be honest,

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I think that's great.

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And I think you're right as well that there were things

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you obviously can control.

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And then there were the things you can't control.

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And I was really intrigued.

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You planting a tree for every order.

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Cause I guess that kind of offsets some of what you can't control.

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How are you?

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I mean, I'm assuming you're not physically planting trees yourself.

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Are you actually managing that?

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No.

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See my, um, yeah, no, my garden is not full of trees.

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Um, so there are a number of platforms actually you can use, if

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you have a Shopify site, I don't know about others, but if you have

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a Shopify site, you can integrate with a number of different platforms.

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I use Tree Nation Ecology, or another one, um, where actually your order is

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fed through and a tree is automatically planted and you can go through and see

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where it's been planted there's pictures of where it's been planted you can comment

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on it, you can, and it keeps basically your forest, but it's obviously not one

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forest, but, um, and you can, as a, as a customer, they can go and comment on it.

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And yeah, it's, it's, it's a nice thing for the customer to see, but

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that's not the point of it for me.

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It's not, uh, it's not a sales spiel.

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Um, I don't actually, I don't think I even advertise the fact that I do it that much.

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Um, it's just it's for me, to be honest.

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Yeah.

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And I think that that makes it, I think, even more authentic and you, right.

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I mean, I only found it because I found it somewhere on your website

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that obviously I was trawling and, you know, um, but you're right.

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It was definitely it wasn't front and center.

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It wasn't on the homepage.

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I didn't, it wasn't.

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C come across it, you know, I was having a good look I think that's amazing.

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Um, um, yeah, I had no idea that was a Shopify integration.

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I'm actually, like I re I'm a big fan of Shopify.

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I think it's brilliant for e-commerce and it sounds like some

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of the integrations, it just gets.

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Better and better really, because I guess that's something that a few years ago, had

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you wanted to plant a tree for every order let's say that's something that actually

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could have been quite a lot more admin for you and potentially, cause it sounds

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like you've got loads on your plate.

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It could have been sort of a reason not to do it because yeah, quite

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a lot of work, but it sounds like they make it so easy, which is.

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Yeah.

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Um, I'm really impressed actually by that.

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Yeah.

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And I think there's a lot more platforms than the two I've mentioned.

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Um, and they just are an app or an integration or

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something, um, with Shopify.

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So you should just be able to yeah.

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Pull your order straight through into them and it automatically does it.

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So.

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Um, yeah.

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There's no excuse not to.

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see.

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I, I know I'm easy.

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I think I am easily impressed, but you, that is one of the interesting

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things I've heard this whole week.

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I think, I think that's really, really good.

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And it's all right.

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There's still time it's only Thursday.

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I just love that because I love anything that makes things simple.

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Yeah.

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I'm I'm really, yeah.

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I'm really impressed by that.

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You probably saw, um, I'll try and find a link for that actually that I can

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put into the show notes, if there's anyone else selling on Shopify that

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thinks, so I'd quite like to do that.

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Then people go look into it and I'm assuming, and this is an assumption

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because I don't know, only just found that it's existed, but I'm assuming they would

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probably other integration if people.

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I don't know, wants to take plastic out of the ocean rather than

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plants trees that kind of thing.

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I'm imagining there were other integrations that

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I'm sure there are.

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Yeah, I haven't looked in others, but there's, I mean, with Shopify,

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there's an app for everything.

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Yes.

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There's definitely.

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Yeah, there definitely is.

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So I think anyone who's interested, I've definitely encouraged to go and

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look at what the options are out there because I'm, I'm sure there will be.

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There will be lots.

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Cause I mean, lots of more businesses are thinking about ways of becoming

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more sustainable and giving back.

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So I think it's

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On that topic, I think.

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I think the main thing for me is there's a lot more that you need to do before

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you just go and install an app, um, to plant a tree or to do whatever.

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Like, um, if you're putting it in your Instagram bio, um, you probably need

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to take more steps before you do that.

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Like it's not a sales tool.

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It should just be something that you're doing that's authentic to

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your business and your values.

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Likestop non-plastic packaging.

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Doesn't cost exponentially more than plastic packaging.

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And so many businesses still use plastic and things like there's, there's

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just, there's a lot more steps than just sticking it up on and letting

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people know that you plant a tree.

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Do you know what I mean?

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Yeah.

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Oh, absolutely.

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I guess I was almost coming at it from the other way, which is, I was

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thinking that you don't even have to necessarily tell people you're doing it.

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If it's something you want to see.

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So when I was selling products, I'm not anymore.

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I used to use recyclable packaging.

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So my own boxes where recycled were from recycled paper.

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And they were recycleable, obviously, because they were cardboard.

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Yeah.

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And then the package and I sent things out to people in looks like plastic, but

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wasn't, I think it was cane or something.

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Yeah.

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There's lots of different options aren't there,

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but I never actually spoke about that.

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I realize in hindsight it was just something I did, but it wasn't kind

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of, it was something I did because I believed in it, but I also didn't feel

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it was something that was a core part of my business that I was talking about.

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Yeah.

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That makes sense.

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So I think you're right.

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I think that, um, And he, cause, I mean, I think there are lots of us who do things

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like this in our, who do you help out in this way in our personal life or for

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our business, or I think, I guess it's up to people to think about what they

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want to do and how they want to do it.

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And if they want to talk about it and if so, how they want to talk about

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absolutely.

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Yeah.

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Um, yeah, I agree because I obviously have, uh, I obviously

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have it on my site that it's sustainable and things like that.

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That's.

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Essentially it, if it, if it helps sell things wonderful, but

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that's not the reason behind it.

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Um, and is actually, hopefully to make my customers think about themselves as well.

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Yeah.

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And actually.

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Um, I'm actually starting to feel like it.

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Then we may come to a point where doing a bit, our bit for the planet as business

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owners, isn't necessarily a marketing or a sales tool because it'll just be expected.

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It would just be what everyone I'd like to think that we get to the point where

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actually it's kind of a given that you wouldn't use unnecessary plastic

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or you would give back in some way.

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I feel like it's moving more in that direction, more and more

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businesses that I look at are doing their bit in different ways.

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And some are talking about it very openly.

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And some you don't find out until you look into them.

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That I do wonder if it is going to get to the point where actually

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it's, it's just what businesses,

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it's just what happens.

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Yeah.

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And that's, that's what it should be.

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So like actually an example is I was, I saw, um, somewhere I worked with

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previously a photographer posts, some pictures of, um, some products from a

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brand that she'd been sent to photograph and each of them was in a plastic wallet.

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And I was just thinking like, there's just no need for it.

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Like you could probably even actually save yourself money by not having each

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products packaged in plastic as well.

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So it's not even a fact of, um, oh, it's just not, I can't afford to do it or it's.

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Yeah.

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And I think, I hope that people are being more conscious of that.

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So they might see that and think actually, I'm not going to buy that because I could

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buy it from here when it's not in plastic and especially with items for my, for,

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for my daughter and for your kids, like you want to choose for that item to be

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here when they're an adult, they don't, you don't want it to forced upon you.

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Like, yeah.

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I don't know if I'm not explaining that very well, but considering

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the environmental impact of things we buy for our children is

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considering our children's future.

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Yeah, I know exactly what you mean when, um, I liked when you were talking about

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your products and about how you were saying they're not too timely or trendy.

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Um, cause I think that is a big thing nowadays.

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So when I was selling my own brands of baby products, my

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products were deliberately designed to last and to not be too.

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To not have that.

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They weren't, they were just a little bit of branding, but sorts of, so

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say for example, one product I sold were bamboo bowls and the, there was

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like a logo on the bottom of the bowl and the, the whole rest of it just

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looked like a beautiful bowl because I mean, I still use them in my home.

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Now my kids are grown up, but we as adults use them because they're bit,

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you can eat your cereal out of them.

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They just feel nice.

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They look nice.

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I like, I like bamboo.

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And that was kind of the idea to not create a range of.

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Plastic children's plates and bowls because I mean, we had all of that.

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Um, but my children now have grown out of those and we weren't given them and we

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did have, you know, have these Ikea ones.

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And now it's just like, well, what do I do with these?

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Because you know, my kids, my kids have outgrown them, but

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they're actually not usable.

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And of course you can pass them on.

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But, um, I much prefer the products that have a bit of longevity.

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Yeah.

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I mean, obviously children are going to outgrow some things, but I think there

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are definitely certain items, like gift items or home items that you kind of want

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to be able to have for years and yeah.

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They send out,

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even if it is something that they grow out of something, it's something

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that you would want to keep.

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And just say, actually, I'm going to put this aside because when you're

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30, you're going to want to look at.

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And all.

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So for example, milestone plaques or things like that,

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obviously they have a finite time.

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So if you use it, when a baby is three months to take a photo, But

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also you pop them in a memory box and maybe they might want to use it

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with their kids or you pass it to a family member to use with their baby.

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Then you've got pictures of all your babies with the same thing, and you can

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compare sizes and look back on photos and pick out thing and that's actually

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a tangible thing that your mum that might not, might no longer be with.

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Gave to you.

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And it's just the essence of that kind of thing is my mom was big into memory

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boxes is, or is big into memory boxes and we've got boxes of stuff that I

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love leafing through and thinking, oh, look at that like newsletter I wrote

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when I was in school and I just loved the idea of someone keeping something

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and passing it down and reusing it.

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And yeah,

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that is lovely.

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And I agree.

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I think that's, I'm really big into memory boxes as well.

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And.

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My kids probably now just think, why is she hoarding all these birthday cards?

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Or like, yeah, I have the little , like I am one plaque and things.

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They probably think I'm nuts and my husband, certainly isn't taking

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up all the space, but one day they will love looking through those.

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I'm convinced of it.

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There'll be so pleased.

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I kept all of it because I don't have that much.

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That my mum kept when I was young and I have bits and pieces, but you know, there

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are certain things you look back with fondness and you think, well, it would

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be really lovely to have that because you know, your own children would like it

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or to use in your own family around her.

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But I think it's, I think it's lovely.

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And I think as you say, the gifts you're creating, cause I'm assuming

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most of them probably gifted items.

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They just, yeah, they are nice keepsake.

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Yeah.

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I think I always like, like you said, I always used to look at my

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mum and like, why are you putting my 25 meter swimming badge in a box?

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Like, but now as a 30 year old, I'm like, oh, actually, That's actually really nice.

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So yeah.

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It's yeah.

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Keepsakes is, is my vibe and a hundred percent.

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I'm passionate about that and keeping and passing on.

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And I mean, as a parent, you inevitably end up with your

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house full of plastic stuff.

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Um, because either people give it to you or you buy it because you hope

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it might give you five minutes peace.

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Um, That doesn't have to be the end of it.

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Like there's loads of, um, Facebook sites around here that you can put stuff

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on and pass down to, to people with younger babies or kids in the area.

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And, uh, uh, I think there's loads of different, new ways always coming up

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of, of ways to reuse things that aren't necessarily staying in your family either.

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Yeah, absolutely.

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I'm a big fan of that as well.

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nothing in this house really goes in the bin, you know?

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Cause I think there'll always be someone who will need that very

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thing that you don't need anymore.

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Um, and yeah, cause I'm, I, sometimes I look at the amount of plastic toys

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and things and just think, oh gosh, but you know that they're eventually

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when my children finished with them, I know someone else's children will

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enjoy them whether that in a home or when of nursery or wherever, you know?

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Yeah, exactly.

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It's very different to very very different to basically just wrapping something and

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plastic to be thrown away, like two very different types of plastic, which, um,

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hopefully one day will be gone and we'll all play with wooden toys, but I don't

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think that's achievable at anytime soon.

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So I don't although I do hope we get to the point where not all

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toys come wrapped in plastic.

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with lots of plastic ties that say, yeah, you know, all this unnecessary,

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you know, or it's unnecessarily wrapping something up in plastic ties to a piece

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of cardboard and you can't recycle it.

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It's covered.

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in tape.

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And I'm hoping that we start moving.

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I don't think plastic toys are going away.

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And I do know, we're getting little bit off topic, but I D I do hope the big,

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the bigger company sorts of also start looking at being a bit more sustainable

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in how they package their products, because I do think like it's small

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businesses that are leading the way when I shop on Etsy, which I do a lot because

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I want to support small businesses.

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I would say 99% of things come in, recyclable packaging and

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very minimal packaging as well.

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Um, which is amazing.

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But that yet you sometimes buy from a larger website and it almost inevitably

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come with plastic bag, for example.

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Yeah.

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And there's no need for it, especially on bigger businesses.

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If small businesses can do it, big businesses.

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Yeah, this is one of my, um, one of my bug bears at the moment is a, oh

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wait, actually I want to name the retailer, but there's a retailer if you

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buy clothes from, they come on a coat hanger wrapped in see through, plastic.

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I don't know what you call that inside of a plastic bag.

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I like that coat hanger.

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I mean, , you know, there's only so many coat hangers you need, um, The

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plastics of wrapping it up to then put it in another plastic thing.

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Yeah.

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I find this really frustrating, but yeah.

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And most of the time these companies are companies that say they've

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got a plan of action to, um, yeah.

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Reduce their environmental impact, but it's still not.

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No.

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And it does seem mostly to be small businesses leading the way, which I think.

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It's a good thing.

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Yeah, exactly.

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So I have one final question for you, if that's okay.

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Georgina, which is what would your number one piece of advice

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be for other product creators?

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Um, that's a really tough one and I should have thought about it

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more before for coming on this.

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Um, I think it would just be to make sure you're still having fun with it.

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Um, make sure you're enjoying it because I think that really does

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come across in, especially as a small business, when it tends to be one

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person or a few people doing everything.

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If you're not passionate about it and enjoying it and doing it for

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the right reasons, your content and marketing and, and re reason isn't

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going to resonate with the customer.

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Um, But also, it's got to be about your quality of life as well.

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Like there's very few people that will choose to work, um, if they didn't

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need to, but actually, I don't know.

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It's not, I'm not making sense.

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Am I making sense?

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You are making sense.

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I think you're right, because I think you need to enjoy it because, um, otherwise

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it's a job and I guess that a lot of us, if we didn't want to be doing what

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we've been doing would go and get a job.

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Um, so you have that.

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I agree.

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You have to, you have to want to do it because running a business isn't

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easy and you know, you have to put in hours, maybe, you know, work more hours.

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Maybe you'd like to, and you know, the income might not always

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be where you want it to be.

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So I think you do have to have that reason to keep going.

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Um, 'cause it's hard.

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And I think if you're not enjoying it, then it's much harder to

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keep going when you have hose hard days or weeks or months.

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Yeah.

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Yeah.

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Yeah.

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I think that's what I'm getting at basically.

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And just keep checking in with yourself and make sure that you are, because it's

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really stressful and it's really hard work and the hours are actually way longer

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than if you're working for someone else.

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But obviously there's the huge perks of working for yourself and

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running your own business as well.

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Um, but yeah, I think my biggest thing is just keep checking in with yourself and

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making sure you're still doing it for the right reasons I'm for you and your family.

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Um, I guess it's not really a tip on how to get your products out there and

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sell it, but, um, ultimately I think it actually is because I think it does

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come through in small businesses as a whole, when someone is genuinely

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enjoying and loving what they do.

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I think so too, because you're, I completely agree with you that if you

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are not enjoying it then, so I think, I think this especially comes across

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on social media, because if you're finding it a struggle, you know, to

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post about what you're doing and what products you've got, because you know,

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you're not enjoying it or you're not excited about what you're creating.

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For example, I think that's where we differ.

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Too, you know, I, I like watching Reels people who like create things, it seems to

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be creative people, do, really good reels.

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You can see that, you know, they really loving what they're doing

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and they're enjoying the process.

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And that can really, when that comes across, it gives a

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different vibe doesn't it too.

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When it feels more like marketing and by the way, I do think I do personally

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find marketing a bit of a chore.

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It's not one of my favorite things.

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So I'm not, I'm not looking at anyone who finds it hard.

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Cause I actually, it's probably the thing that I find the hardest is actually

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I find it hard too yeah.

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I find, I definitely find it hard.

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Um, I think, uh, it's not about finding the marketing

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specifically easier, fun, but just.

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Being being in your business for the right reason, we'll make everything easier

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yeah.

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I guess what I'm trying to get at is, is I think that if you if, if you

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enjoy what you're doing and you enjoy what you're creating and, you know,

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You know, you love your products.

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It does make that marketing, even if, even if it might not make it easier,

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but it will feel slightly easier.

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Yeah.

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I think that's what I'm trying to get at I'm not articulating anything

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very well this morning, but that's what I think I'm trying to get at.

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I think, I think it's fair to say that we're probably both

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agreed that everything's harder if you are not enjoying it.

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And I also would say that just because you're not enjoying it

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also doesn't necessarily mean that you shouldn't be doing it.

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You need to be thinking about ways to make your life easier.

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Um, yeah.

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You know, cause I think it's very easy.

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One thing I think that's quite common with small businesses is just, just get

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burned out because you're doing too much.

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And I think that can be a good, just take a step back.

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Yeah.

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A hundred percent.

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Yeah.

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So back to the marketing stuff, like when I get tagged in a photo and see

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my product, like being held, but like being used to announce a newborn baby

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or being put in someone's nursery that they've lovingly created for their child.

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I think that just, if something like that gives you the buzz, then it's right.

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Yeah, absolutely.

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So I think that, yeah, I think it's really exciting seeing someone using

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something that you created is just lovely.

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Yes.

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And I think it's good.

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And I can tell you're very, still really excited about what you're doing.

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I just feel, I just feel really lucky to be able to do that, to be honest.

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Yeah.

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Cause I guess as we, we we've, we've been talking a lot about how running your own

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business is hard and it is, but there are definitely upsides as well, particularly.

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I think if you.

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Uh, family.

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Well, from my personal experience, um, running my own business

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works well with having a family.

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That's not to say that I want to be working evenings and things like that.

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But on the other side, being able to sort of take your children

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to school and pick them up.

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And yeah, that's sort of things to me, actually, my daughter's in a show

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on Tuesday at 11, I'm going to go to.

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And just, just little things like that.

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Um, my parents run their own business as we were growing up.

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They still do.

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And it's just, I think stuff like that is what I always knew that I

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needed to get to when I had a family.

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But yeah, I used to work in big corporates and that was

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not my, uh, not my job at all.

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Me neither actually

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I'm not a corporate person at all.

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Well, thank you so much for everything you've shared today Georgina.

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Thanks very much for having me.

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It's been really lovely to chat.

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Thank you so much for listening all the way to the end of this episode.

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If you enjoyed it, please do leave me a review that really helps

Speaker:

other people to find this podcast.

Speaker:

Make sure you subscribe so you don't miss any future episodes and

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do tell your friends about it too.

Speaker:

If you think that they also might enjoy it, can find me@vickyweinberg.com.

Speaker:

There you'll find link to all of my social channels.

Speaker:

You'll find lots more information.

Speaker:

All of the past podcast episodes and lots of free resources too.

Speaker:

So again, that's Vicki weinberg.com.

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Take care, have a good week and see you next time.