There are many beautiful words to sum up the gorgeousness that is Kim from Captain + Co but it comes down to 5 main words – loving, clever, generous, kind, and hilariously funny! Ok that might be 5.5 words! This lady continually has me in hysterics whenever I read her blog. Kim writes with wit, realism and truth about life as a mum to 2 beautiful girls, balancing a small business, battling PND, dealing with copy cats and so much more.
I am so thrilled as Kim is my “blogger behind the brand” for this week’s Blog me happy feature! I have adored her since we met in person back in 2014 and I have delighted in her journey as she whipped up a storm of pom poms, antlers and felted delights for Captain + Co. She was a champion of small business and built up a HUGE following in such a short space of time.
Then she did the unthinkable… Kim shut up her seriously popular shop this year, despite a legion of fans and customers. But was it really the unthinkable when she had 2 babes under 2? Or was it actually the best thing at the right time? Read on to find out.
Q1. What ignited your passion to start “Captain + Co” this year and turn your back on your thriving small business?
I’m not sure I really had a passion to blog. I think it was just a way of coping and staying ‘relevant’ in the online world while I decided my next ‘making’ move. I knew I had to close the store for my sanity, my health and my family. But I wasn’t ready to be a full time mum only. I needed a little bit more. And to be honest, I wasn’t totally sure I would definitely one hundred percent close and stop making completely. But I have. And for now, I will stay closed with no plans in the near future to fire up again.
I am not a natural born writer. Heck no. I am an editor’s worst nightmare. Heck yes. And proof readers would get all up in my grill. But I thought about how hard it was to start my own small business. And about the support I would have loved from the ‘bigger’ guys when I first started. I figured I had a fabulous amount of followers, so why not shout out about other small businesses and help share the love.
Q2. Having been a successful small business owner yourself and supporter of small; you are now using your contacts to promote and help other businesses make it big on your blog, what would be your 3 key tips for any mumpreneur starting out?
Wow. Basically my mantra. Keep it Simple. Keep it Kind. Keep it Original.
Simple. Don’t try and do too much too soon. Take is slow. Let the business evolve. Learn and grow as you go. I found I tried to do too many products and cover all ‘niches’. But find your niche. And rock the socks out of it.
Kind. Treat everyone with kindness and respect. Handle hiccups with dignity and grace. And if all else fails, say nothing, walk away, hold your head high and as my yoga teacher always says in the hardest yoga poses…. Don’t forget to smile.
Original. Most ideas are same same but different. But if you can honestly be proud of what you make and create, and honestly know you haven’t copied someone else, then all is good. I know in the bloggin world, almost every topic has been written in some way or another. All I can do is make sure I use my own words. Share my own thoughts. My own feelings. And stay true to myself.
Tough question. I think so many ladies are rocking the small business world, but I would have to say …
Happy Hands Happy Heart. Em burst onto the scene with such enthusiasm and a fabulous product. She is a true sweet heart. And an absolute super star in my eyes.
Kippins. I have watched Heather from the very beginning of the Kippins Tribe journey. Total inspiration. She has created such a rocking business, I’m not sure I can call is small anymore. She found her niche. And is rocking it. Plus she is a ridiculously funny, ridiculously lovely, ridiculously good looking with great taste in shoes and can totally handle being told to get out of a team group photo!
Into the Fold. Penny has just cornered the floorie market. Love them. We have Big Maude and Big Doug. Trying oh-so hard not to grab another floorie. Have you seen the new ones!? And I adore seeing her floories poppin up all over the world in some of the most amazingly styled homes.
Honey & Co Club. Best idea ever. We like to be a tech free household. Our kids do not use ipads or iphones. And we would like to keep it that way for as long as possible. So these monthly mail packs for Mini are perfect. She loves getting it each month and interacting with everything inside.
This Little Love. Those beds. That styling. We have been following Hayley from early on and love watching her succeed and pop up in oh-so many magazines. Plus she is super lovely and super genuine.
Q4. Maintaining a popular feed on Instagram, as well as being a mother to two babes, running a small business not to mention being a wife, daughter, and sister, it can be hard to find a balance. Do you think in general as modern mums we try to do too much and fit too much into our lives? Did you find by being a WAHM you had more time with your kids or less?
We totally try to do too much. But as women, we always seem the need to multi task. And always need to have a lot on. I know I do. I don’t like to sit still. I like to have goals. Ambitions. Adventures.
Honestly, when I was making, I had less time with my kids. I used to shoo them away. And just recently I realised Freya was 10 months already. I felt like I had missed so many moments with her, with both my girls, by trying to be the best. To sell. To succeed. I put far too much pressure on myself. It became a chore. I became a mega-stress-head-cray-cray lady. The worst.
It may have taken me a good three months to really really reaaaallly close my store. But since then. I have never been happier. Less stressed. Less pressure.
And now I blog when it feels right. When the babes are in bed for the night. And some weeks, I don’t blog at all. Some days I don’t post. Some weeks I have off. I just roll with what works for me. For my babes. For my family.
Q5. I have been blessed to meet you in person whilst getting our weave on and you made me laugh and giggle back then. However, it wasn’t until I started to read your blog posts as a contributor over at MeOhMy that I realised how amazing your talent was. You blow me away with your humour and the way you can translate that humour into words. You don’t take yourself too seriously and make sure there is always a dose of fun whilst keeping it real. Have you ever considered being a talk show host or stand-up comic? I am totally serious about that! Also what did you do before kids and are your kids in hysterics from morning to night?
Talk about serious weave face. I have never met anyone as focused as you in a weave workshop. Hilarious Lizzie. I adored you straight away.
And thank you. But in all honesty, I never considered myself funny. I still don’t. I write how I think. How I talk. How I feel.
As for being a talk show host or comic. The thought of that nearly makes me wee myself. With nerves. I am the most insecure-shy-don’t-look-at-me person. I struggle to talk in public. Heck. I threw up walking down the isle. Mini mouth vom. Gross I know. And it wasn’t because I was worried or having doubts about marrying my Mr Perfect. Heck no. It was because 40 of my closest friends and family would all be looking at me. It scared the bejesus out of me. Still does. I loathe being the centre of attention. So silly. But so true.
Although I did have a brief acting gig once. I was a flower. In my Year Seven German Play. I had to say four words. “Ich bin eine Blume”. Of course I froze. And managed to squeak out “Blume”. Lets just say the talent scouts didn’t come knocking my door down.
Q6. What toys do your children keep coming back to, time and time again?
I am really lucky, Mini loves to learn. So she can’t get enough of her Two Little Ducklings Flash Cards. Plus books, playdough, painting and drawing. And of course Duplo. I would love to say she plays with the copious amount of wooden toys I have for her. But Duplo wins almost everytime. As for Frey. She always wants to play with what ever Mini is playing with. Of course!
Q7. What are three helpful tips you have to a blogger who is just starting out?
Stay true to yourself. Do not try and be someone you aren’t. Write your way. Your words. Your style. Don’t compete. Don’t compare. Just be you.
Q8. How would you describe your perfect Sunday?
Sleep in. Ha. Never going to happen.
We get up super early everyday. Sunday is no exception. We always start with Pancakes. Then always try and go on an adventure. Our favourite place is Badger Head Beach. Winter and Summer. Walks on the beach collecting shells, wave jumping and rock pool exploring.
To be honest, I wouldn’t care if we were stuck inside on a rainy Sunday building blanket forts and making baking mess. And that’s ok. As long as I spend the day with my loves. Mini, Frey and Mr Perfect. The best.
Show some love for the fabulously hilarious Kim (I told you didn’t I). Thank me later!
Blog – Captain + Co
Instagram – @captain.and.co