In our Insta Biz section we talk to and with inspiring mums and women (and of course also dads and men!) who took the risk of starting their own business. Our first mumma is Emma, who runs a bizz called Captain Cash.
Tell us about yourself; who are you, where do you live, what makes you who you are.
My name is Emma, I am 26 years old. I was born and raised in Sydney by my wonderful mum and Dad who have made me into the woman I am today. I have four older brothers who all but one live close by. We have always been a close knit family and now our children are all growing up together.I have a one year old son with my amazing Partner Dean. His name is Cash and he is our world. Without Dean and Cash’s two Nans, Captain Cash would certainly not exist. They dedicate so much time to entertaining and playing with Cash so I can create.I was previously a flight attendant and will be returning part time at the end of this month after taking 1.5 years maternity leave. I am quite nervous but also excited.
What kind of business do you run, what is your service or product?
I run an online children’s decor business called Captain Cash. My products are all hand cut, hand sanded and hand painted. I sell various peg dolls. From astronauts to mermaids and the crowd favourite, The Natives Family.Our top sellers and signature product is our original Woodland Trees and Magic Mushrooms. They come in various sets of different shapes and sizes and can be painted in the colours of your choice.
How did this business come about, what inspired you?
The inspiration behind my business came from both my son and my Dad. Not long after giving birth to my son, my plans changed- I NEEDED to be with him. I would wake up every morning pondering how I could stay home and watch him grow up for as long as I could. With work looming around the corner I would literally dream (when I actually got some sleep) of how I could be a work at home mum. In February last year my Dad sadly passed away. Cash was just 6 months old. Life froze for a little while. I tried so hard to keep myself busy, one day I was feeling creative and decided to make Cash some keepsake peg dolls. All of a sudden, my ideas were flowing like mad. I would stay up until 1am painting and painting. I even went out and bought a scroll saw and started playing around with wood. My dad was a very talented painter and I know some how he led me to this. I still feel him around inspiring me. So with all the ideas I had I looked into an online business. A good friend of mine Lauren had just started an online business called B.a.by Birdie making pram liners and I watched her business blossom. I had to give it a go. With literally my last bit of maternity pay I took a gamble and went and spent up big on supplies. It was all or nothing.
Is running your own business as you expected it to be? What is the best thing about it? What is most challenging?
Running my own business is crazy but I love it. It wasn’t what I expected because I never imagined to receive the amount of love and interest we get.
Not because I don’t believe in my products, it’s just that there are so many other amazing and inspiring creators out there I still can’t believe people see me as one of them. I never expected to be this busy and in demand put it that way. The best thing about running my own business is being able to be at home with my son. That’s such a privilege I will never take for granted and I am so thankful for our customers who support and buy our products. I have made so many wonderful friends through Instagram and it’s so wonderful to work alongside so many other talented mummmas and makers. The most challenging part about it is probably the stress i put on myself to deliver. Most days I am up to all hours of the night working. Working all weekend while my son and my partner spend quality time together. When you are a one man show it’s hard when your personal life needs to take priority. If my son is teething or sick work has to take the back seat. I have no one else who can cover for me so I have to email customers and tell them their orders will be delayed. However I am always blown away how lovely and understanding everyone always is.
Do you have any tips for others who want to go down this path of running their own business?
My tips for someone going down this same path is to be original. People love to see new exciting products. In some way you have to keep up with the trends but if you can do this while staying true to your own style and individuality then you’re on the right track for a best seller. Also because my main platform for advertising is social media you can run into some keyboard warriors from time to time.Social media is absolutely fantastic for advertising your products and connecting with the public, but unfortunately trolls are always hiding behind some keyboard somewhere. Never take anything to heart because there is always more love then hate.
Do you have a random fact, a funny story, an embarrassing moment etc. that you can share with us?
A random fact would be that Captain Cash originally started as money boxes. They never surfaced as they were a flop. I was looking for one for my son and couldn’t find too many that I liked or would display on a shelf so started making some of my own. I was in over my head using a saw, sanding, painting and assembling all by myself and knew it would never be profitable so started out with a few peg dolls and we grew from there.
If you want to see more from CaptainCash make sure to check them out on www.captaincash.bigcartel.com
all images are provided by Captain Cash