Celebrating Kent Mums in Business: Alicebee Designs
As you will know by now I have decided to dedicate a blog post each month to one of the amazing Mum-owned local businesses here in Kent.
There are *so* many wonderful businesses right on our doorstep which are owned and run by incredible local Mums and I think it is so important to celebrate them and their achievements!!
This month I had the pleasure of spending time with Hannah Blackford, the owner and creator of Alicebee Designs, a range of luxury, hand-made accessories.
Something I really love about Hannah is that she really thinks about what her customers might need (even if they don’t quite know yet themselves)
Her most popular item at the moment is a key fob wristlet - something I had never heard of before Hannah started making them - but now I have one I wonder how I ever lived without it – it really is such a fantastic idea for those of us who often have our hands full!!
I recently spent a lovely morning with Hannah…we chatted about her business over a cuppa (and maybe a few double chocolate cookies!) and I got to see her work her magic and create some beautiful customer orders…
Tell us about your business and what services you offer?
I own and run Alicebee Designs - a range of handmade luxury keyfob wristlets and children’s hair accessories.
The majority of my products are made using beautiful Liberty and Rifle Paper and Co prints, but I have recently added lots of other design and fabrics too.
I’m always on the lookout for new fabrics to use in my designs.
Is there a story behind the name you chose?
When my daughter, Alice, was younger I struggled to find hair clips and bows that I liked so I decide to make my own. A few people suggested that I should start selling them and that’s how it all started.
I decided to set up an Etsy Shop and named it after my daughter.
I have added lots of products along the way and my biggest sellers are my keyfob wristlets.
I even managed to sell them in Liberty of London over the Christmas Period which is a dream come true.
What do you offer to your clients that no-one else does?
All my Keyfobs are made at my kitchen table which can get hectic with two small children running about!!
They are all handmade and packaged by myself and I think that customers like to know that….
Customers love to shop small and support local small business… I try to shop that way too.
My Keyfobs have been such a hit with my Mum-friends….. it make their lives easier when juggling small children and shopping etc to have their keys to hand and not to have to rifle through their handbags searching for their keys!
Where does your inspiration come from?
I love going to independent fabric shops, charity shops for inspiration for my next range of Keyfobs as well as going to Liberty of London… their fabric department is amazing!
I try to select fabrics that match with the seasons… Christmas is my favourite season.
I also love looking through interior magazines for inspiration for colours and patterns.
What is your favourite part of your job?
I really do love the whole process, from making the products to packaging the finished items.
I love to wrap my products up in lovely tissue paper etc so that the whole experience of receiving one of my products is enjoyable.
If you are looking for beautiful, handmade accessories for yourself or as a gift for someone close to you, please visit Hannah's Etsy store here and give her a follow on social media...