For our CarbonLIVE Feel Good Festival, we are running an amazing giveaway with 10 goody bags up for grabs. Also, two of our winners will receive our big prize goody bags which are worth over £200. Head over to our Instagram (@carbononcampus) to enter, make sure you don’t miss the cut off (midnight 28/11/20).
It’s time to get to know Calico by Rachel Lena (Instagram @calicobyrachellena), they are one of our brands who are a part of our giveaway. They are an up and coming etsy brand that produces the cutest accessories. From headbands to scrunchies, masks to aprons and so much more. We spoke to Rachel Lena, business owner, all about Calico and the process of starting her own business.
What made you want to start your own business? When did you start it?
About a year and half ago. I’ve worked in retail for a long time and liked the idea of being my own boss. I had also just had my son and liked the idea of working from home to be flexible for him.
What was the process like to start your own business?
I did a lot of research, watched a lot of youtube videos (some were helpful, some weren’t). I actually started with completely different products, it was more like a homemade toy store with teddy bears and bags for kids toys. My mum came aboard when we started making headbands and that was a total game changer.
Why hair accessories and aprons?
The headbands were actually my mum’s idea. People liked my other products but they weren’t selling that much. Then my mum saw me wearing a headband that she liked and said “I think we should make that!” So we did and they really took off. Everything else came from looking at the fabric we had for the headbands and seeing what else we could make from it.
What has your biggest struggle, of having your own business, been so far?
Trying to keep on top of everything. There are so many moving parts but I’m a lot more organised now than I was a year ago.
What is one thing about being a small business owner that no one would expect?
It’s not as lonely as you’d think because there are a lot of us out there so you become a nice supportive community.
Is this your full time job or a side project? Would you like it to be your full time job in the future?
I work part time and run my shop the rest of the time. Though furlough has been helpful for having more time for my shop. I love my other job as a bookseller in a book shop but my shop is growing so i would like to be able to focus on just that.
What do you enjoy most about your own business?
Being in charge lol! and being able to have flexible hours.
What’s the future like for Calico by Rachel Lena?
Good I think, we have some products in a shop now which is exciting! We are continuing to grow and get more exposure which is really good, especially at the end of such a strange year. So hopefully this all keeps up!