I can’t believe that IVY turns 1 today! What an incredibly exciting year it’s been and wow, how it has flown by.
This time last year I was over 8 months pregnant and preparing for either a very quiet, sober Christmas or a very hectic, sleep deprived Christmas with a new born. Either way, I was super busy and a little bit nervous to be launching what would soon become my third baby, IVY!
I couldn’t have dreamt of getting a more positive response to the brand in its first year and I guess I can draw comfort from the fact that I am getting a lot of repeat customers.
A month and 8 days after we launched the brand, Sam finally arrived, completing our world and making things just a tad crazy over here at IVY HQ!
Initially it was my lovely and loyal friends and family who were ordering their long-awaited t-shirts, and then there was the celebratory moment when we received our first order from a complete stranger. We have a thing here at IVY where we celebrate each order - it’s the small things like stranger sales that keep you going in those early days.
So, what have been the highs of this past year?
Well obviously the arrival of Sam Henry William on 8th January. But in the world of IVY, it has been incredible to receive individual feedback from happy customers, shooting and launching 8 new options to the original range in September, and building my support network of fellow #girlbosses through Girl Tribe Gang. It is a business support network like no other – more to follow on that in the next few days.
Throw in a mini single storey extension that we did in the spring time, and its been a hectic year. Although pretty stressful at the time, our new open planned kitchen / playroom has been life changing for us and we are loving our new space.
Personally, I have also loved seeing how our IVY Family of customers have been styling and wearing their t-shirts. The beauty of our product is that the t-shirts can be worn in the most casual of ways, but also styled up, layered up and oversized depending on your mood and occasion. Due to their versatility, the outfit possibilities are endless, so thank you to everyone for sharing and please keep your ways to wear coming.
We have also really loved the events, markets and fairs we have been part of this year. Not only have we enjoyed reaching new women but have also met other small brands selling their wares who we have swapped ideas with and also made plans to collaborate with. This has given me such a boost, and it helps massively to hear others' experiences and learnings during their small business journey.
Let’s not forget the lows...
Some of the toughest parts of the year have been the never ending feeding and sleepless nights that come with having a newborn, teething, chicken pox, toddler tantrums, chicken pox again, and generally not being able to commit enough hours to IVY due to also being a full-time mum. We also had to source a new supplier early in the year, that could accommodate the small quantities we are limited to buy as a start-up business, but are so happy with who we found. The quality, service and relationship we have built, is just as brilliant as I had hoped we would find.
Given my background and experience, the design and buying process are naturally the areas where I have felt most comfortable. But as every new business owner knows, you need to be able to turn your hand to everything. And it’s the PR and Marketing elements that I find hardest. I am learning new things every day and have lots of ideas I want to implement – its just finding the time to bring them all to life.
A sneak peek into what to expect in 2019...
- In the New Year, for Spring Summer 2019, we are super excited that we will be bringing you 2 fantastic jersey vests that you will not be able to live without, so watch this space.
- We will be ramping up the style inspiration and demonstrating how easy it is to outfit these wardrobe staples
- And we hope to get out to more events and welcoming even more of you fantastic people into the IVY Family
Finally, as a HUGE thank you to all of our brilliant IVY family, we would like to offer you all 10% off your next order. This offer will run for 5 days only, ending at 10am on 6th December.
What perfect timing too, just in time for Christmas gifts and a little treat or two for yourself.
Simply enter the code IVYISONE10 at the checkout. Click here to shop & redeem your IVY discount.
Love, IVY Sal