Name: Lena Catterick
Live: Byron Bay, Australia
How/Why did you start:
Bringing a child into this world requires a great deal of strength, both physically and mentally, and you experience all sorts of emotions. Your capacity for love expands, and so does your mind, taking you places only a parent can relate. For us, it was a constant “how can we provide her with the best life possible?”
The Yoli & Otis Carrier was designed to cover all three of those things, through the initial stages of childhood.
By using only natural dyes, made from herbs, we eliminate any health risks, keeping right away from those nasty toxins and chemicals. It was incredibly heartbreaking to discover, in detail, that the modern day dying process was essentially responsible for so many long term skin conditions, in babies. This, is also one of our main objectives, to spread the word on chemical dyes and ultimately live out our dream of seeing chemical dyes banned from the industry all together.
Secondly; Keeping them safe
Through research, we had discovered a child’s sense of security and feeling safe, plays a vital role in developing a healthy, intellectual and stimulated mind, skin on skin contact is absolutely essential in creating this. i.e being held and just generally keeping them close, as much as possible. Knowing this, we knew the carrier would more than satisfy this requirement and our darling Yoli, is testament to that, we’ve never known confidence like it!
We all know how a baby’s natural instinct is to feed off their mothers energy. When the mother is flustered, the baby then becomes flustered, uneasy to settle and very upset. We’ve seen this a lot, with mothers attempting to wear their newborn, struggling to get it right. Our carrier is designed to enhance the baby wearing experience in a more positive way, with no ties, buckles, clips or rings. It is essentially two loops of fabric, designed to grow with your baby over time, for maximum comfort and convenience, making baby wearing a breeze and ultimately creating a happy environment for you and your baby.
Go to pieces in your wardrobe:
Cecilie Copenhagen twin sets… simple and fun!
Go to pieces in your mini persons wardrobe:
Natural organic linen Ali baba trousers – she has a few pairs and just worn shirtless or with a soft cotton singlet, they’re ever so cute!
Something we don’t know about you:
Worked in Spain for two years, on Super yachts. Although it was a lot of fun, the reality of it all, was awfully daunting. Discovering how much gets wasted in the industry; food, money, time. It was a huge eye opener!
Must have products in your handbag:
I don’t wear a handbag. I try to keep accessories to a bare minimum
Must have products for your small person:
Yoli & Otis Carrier, Hammock and a good swaddle blanket
The Ocean…it reminds me that my problems or concerns, really aren’t that big after all.
Find a healthy snack they love. Yoli’s is Nori Sheets, we take them everywhere!
How did you go from idea to product:
Firstly, above all else, it is important that you believe in yourself and your product. To the point where it consumes your every thought, day in, day out.
From there it began with a google search; Organic Cotton, Natural Dyeing, India. Particularly India, because we’re very fond of Karma, an indian philosophy. Many aspects of Indian religions reflect the widely held belief that karma may be shared. They love children, babies are seen to be the purest form of innocents, which we have to agree with. Thus, leading us to genuinely believe our carriers are made with the sincerest form of love and an abundance of good Karma.
From there, we found the perfect team to continue with, on this journey to making our beloved carriers become a reality.
When everything fell into place, we knew it was meant to be, and that is the substance to our motivation.
Advice for others at the idea point:
Do your research, find out whats out there, similar products already on the market etc.
Next find someone local to make up a prototype of exactly what it is you want. Changes are inevitable, so communication needs to be crystal clear!
Then, carefully select a manufacturer to help make your dream a reality, make contact, ask questions, and then ask more questions. Do background checks (there are a lot of duds in the industry, it’s important to get it right the first time, so don’t rush anything, take your time and like i say, ask plenty of questions)
Once you’ve found your match, you don’t necessarily need to start production immediately. Weeks, months, years could pass before you’ve saved enough funds, done enough research, or even allowed yourself enough time. but it is, however, very important you maintain contact, so it stays fresh in your mind and keeps you motivated, ready for your next move.
Best read this year:
i’ve just started reading my new penguin collection of F Scott Fitzgerald’s work, designed by Coralie Bickford-smith.
Needless to say, The Great Gatsby has been my favourite, thus far.
Favourite article would have to be the teaching philosophy behind Rudolph Steiner
Best advice you’ve been given:
Something Peta said, actually.. I received a lot of really good advice from her but the one thing that really stuck out, was to “always surround yourself with motivated people, people that can help you along the way” As a result, I am now in the process of joining arms with a close friend. Someone who shares my values, and vision, and can help take this dream to the next level with her ability to stay motivated and always keep me on my toes! – THANK YOU PETA! x
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Check Yoli & Otis out further at http://www.yoliandotis.com/