The Curious Mummy Meets Mumpreneur Delphine of Petrichor London
I love women doing it for themselves so this month, I am shining the Mum Boss spot light on Craft designer Delphine from Petrichor London.
This talented lady reinvented herself as a designer & business woman by creating beautiful bespoke personalised gifts. Be prepared to be inspired as Delphine shares her top tips to starting a business and how she finds a balancing being her own boss and a mother.
Tell us a bit about yourself?
I am a French mummy to two girls (Ivy & Margot) & a rescued cat. Ten years ago I moved from Paris to London for a job, where I organised weddings at London Zoo – Oh the stories I could tell! I was meant to stay for just 6 months or so, but I fell in love with England (and a Yorkshire man) and now this is my home. For six years I worked in Marketing for a very large consultancy firm, but during my second maternity leave I took the plunge, and started my own business.
Amazing! Tell us about Petrichor London and what gave you the idea to start?
It all started with trying to deal with Ivy’s full head of hair, when she was a baby: I was buying classic-looking hair bows from a French firm, and one day I looked at them and thought: there must be a way to do this myself better and cheaper.. So I bought some Liberty fabric, a sewing machine, and taught myself on Youtube: I had no experience sewing but I started with easy projects and soon I was making bows and other items for all my friends. I realised there was a market for affordable personalised items, and so Petrichor was born.
Describe your typical day?
I am in charge of the morning routine as my husband cycles to work at 6am to be back early in the evenings. I try to be out of the door as early as possible and spend the morning out – not always a glamorous activity but at least everyone is entertained! The girls nap at the same time so I can squeeze in a couple of hours of sewing. I try to have dinner ready for when Rob gets home so we can share a meal together: despite being French my cooking skills are extremely limited, so no one expects a gourmet meal which is great. Evenings are very busy with work. It is the trade-off I make to get things done.
What do you think it takes to be a Mum Boss?
A lot of resilience, as success is not immediate and starting your own business has a lot of really exciting highs but also some demoralising lows. It helps to surround yourself with positive people who can help you keep your eyes on the prize.
What would you say the most important thing is in running an online business? What has been the greatest lesson you have learnt?
Nurture your community – engaging with my clients online is key as so much of my business comes from loyal customers for whom I will be the point of contact for all their birthday / new baby presents. I have learnt that there is space for everyone in the small business community; lots of people (especially mumpreneurs) are happy to share tips and tricks to grow your business. I find this attitude such a world away from the corporate environment I got used to, so it is a welcome & refreshing change.
How do you find the balance between running a successful business and raising a family?
I was warned that running a business from home requires incredible discipline in allocating your time – this is very true. My phone is a major distraction, and it is so easy to be tempted to respond to a couple of emails or browse social media while you are doing a jigsaw. I constantly remind myself that I am privileged to be able to work from home to spend more quality time with my kids so I shouldn’t spoil it. I am still learning: could the person who has found The Answer for the perfect balance please get in touch.
Who are your Mumspirations?
When I was 19 years old, I au-paired for a lady called Carolyn. Having children of my own was definitely not in my short-term agenda, but back then I knew I wanted to be like her. I used to be in awe of her patience and her kids were raised incredibly well-rounded. So I am trying to learn from the example she set.
After work, how do you find time to relax?
At the moment it is a bit tricky as most evenings are dedicated to the business. Weekends are exclusively for the family though.. and Netflix is a prominent feature of my Saturday and Sunday nights, along with some drooling on Etsy over beautiful fabrics.
What are your top five tips for starting a business?
1. Think big picture. The amount of little things you need to deal with can be paralyzing. Once you have made your mind up to start your own business, just get on with it.
2. Speculate to accumulate (time & money) – but know when to draw the line.
3. Silence the Nay-sayers. The era of having one career / one job for life is over – everyone will have to reinvent themselves at some point.
4. Make the physical distinction between personal and business: a separate account on your laptop, a business bank account, etc.
5. And finally: reach for the stars. Set yourself some realistic goals in terms of income for the 3 months, 6 months and 1 year mark – and then celebrate when you do reach these important milestones!
If you would like to find out more about Delphine and her fantastic designs, head to: