Twigged Design creative director, Rachel McFedries tells OHbaby how she manages to take care of her kids and her business taking care of business, and the kids, in Auckland.
Rachel has four children - 3 school-aged girls and a 2 year old boy. The business sprang from a desire to create something beautiful and special for the two girls who would be sharing a room when her fourth child would arrive. She soon realised that the result was something that could be shared with others, so set up kids' furniture design company, Twigged Design, in 2016 with her husband.
OB As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
RF I always had a struggle growing up to know clearly what I wanted to do. I was ‘good at’ Sciences and Art which didn’t seem to fit together well for me. I loved art and hoped to find a way to include creativity in my career.
OB Do you ever feel "mummy guilt" about spending time working instead of with your children? If so, how do you deal with it?
RF Yes, of course at times. I absolutely love my time I have with my kids, but at times there is more demand on my time with the business and, with working from home, it is easy to let this invade family time. To deal with this I have tried hard to set clear work hours and boundaries. Our older kids are also pretty interested in the process we have gone through from the first beds we made (theirs) to having a business. We talk to them about the successes and challenges a little bit. I think it is good for them to see us stepping up to challenges, taking a risk and giving something a go.
OB What do you do to get "me-time"?
RF "Me-time"? Ha ha! …. Actually for me, 'me time' is time with my kids away from the routine... In the weekends over summer it is going to the beach, or a park far far away from my washing pile and vacuum cleaner!. We love family ‘adventures’. If I am really needing some ‘head space’ I go for a walk with our lovely Labrador.
OB What is the smartest thing you have done with your business?
RF Connect with likeminded people in business.
OB What is your favorite thing about the business now? What do you most enjoy?
RF My favourite part of my job is definitely coming up with new designs, however of course this is only a small part of what I do. I also still get excited about every piece of furniture we send out and absolutely love receiving feedback and pictures of how people have styled their spaces using our designs.
OB What is the most surprising thing you’ve found in running your own business?
RF We have been blown away by the support, encouragement we have received by other like minded businesses and creatives and their willingness to collaborate and share their learnings.
OB What is your philosophy to child-rearing?
RF When I had my first child I read a lot of books with so much different advice it was overwhelming. In the end I realized that the most important thing is that my children know I love them no matter what. I trust my instincts and always try to be consistent. I am truly lucky to be parenting with an amazing husband and we always try to present a united front.