Jane Anne McAllister has 14 children (no, that's not a misprint!) between the ages of 43 and 14 years old. She squeezed in some time to chat with OHbaby! about managing a large family while running her business, called Dimples, by JaneAnne.
OB Why did you set up your business?
JM I wanted my children to be dressed in high quality comfortable clothing made from natural materials. When I found it hard to buy this type of clothing in New Zealand I took it upon myself to make a difference.
OB What did you want to be when you grew up?
JM Ever since I can remember I have wanted to be a mother, I have always had a huge love and passion towards babies. Now I have 14 of my own.
OB Do you ever feel ‘mummy guilt’ about spending time working instead of with your children?
JM I have always put my family before my business. I worked from home so that I was able to look after my children, I only ever hired a nanny to help with the cleaning and lunches. You always feel like you could have spent more time with them but when you have such a big family there is always someone to go to.
OB What do you do to get ‘me-time’?
JM Stay up late. I am always busy either spending time with my children or running my business and the only time I am able to get to myself is when my children have gone to bed.
OB What's the smartest thing you have done with your business?
JM The smartest thing I have done is realise that I couldn’t do everything, I came to the conclusion that in order to improve and better my business I needed to hire people that had a stronger set of skills than myself.
OB What's the best thing about your business now? What do you most enjoy?
JM What I enjoy most about my business now is seeing my designs and ideas come to life and be able to share my philosophy on New Zealand-made babywear with new and expectant mothers.
OB What's the most surprising thing you’ve found in running your own business?
JM Seeing how much you can improve. Each year our fashion ranges and quality of clothing keeps improving and the business keeps growing!
OB What's your philosophy to child rearing?
JM You need to set boundaries, listen to your children and give them consistent love and understanding. Teach them good values so that they are able to grow into well-mannered adults with high respect for others.