Busy mums launch online stores
Two hard-working Wicklow women have been inspired by their roles as mothers to create two new online stores selling beautiful products for children.
Delgany mum-of-two Ali Gibbons is the brains behind Lou and Belle (louandbelle.com), an online luxury gifting boutique for babies and children. Stocking a range of baby clothing, interiors, toys and keepsakes, it's a one-stop shop for those looking for an unusual selection of products to surprise and delight.
Ali named the site after her daughters (Lily 'Lou' and Stella 'Belle'), who, she said, inspired her to follow her dream.
'Ever since I had my first daughter over four years ago, I've wanted to create a premium baby gifting boutique that prides itself on offering beautiful and unusual gifts for little ones,' said Ali. 'Many of the brands stocked by Lou and Belle are making their debut in Ireland'.
Lou and Belle allows shoppers to select a pre-made giftbox with a personalised message or to get creative and design their own.
'I am also very proud to say that our clothing range is all organic cotton, and all of our packaging is sustainable with eco-friendly compostable mail sacks and acid free tissue paper and stickers,' said Ali.
Meanwhile, Bray-based Katie Brandon Byrne has not only launched her own sustainable Irish babywear brand, but has also released a unisex collection in time for Christmas.
After becoming a mother, Katie spotted a gap in the market and wanted to develop her own range of ethically sourced, organic babywear. From that, Lil & Izzy Boutique (lilandizzyboutique.com) was born.
The site offers high quality sustainable baby products with functional, unique and clever designs. The practical but stylish range - which includes baby grows, blankets, pyjamas, bibs and hats - is designed using premium organic cotton, which is breathable, super soft and kind to baby's delicate skin.
All the products are designed by Katie, who was inspired by her own experience as a mum to come up with clever solutions and adaptions.
Katie's dream was to create a sustainable brand from the beginning.
'Everyone has to do their part!' she said.
She said that organic cotton fabric production uses less energy and healthy organic soils store more CO2 and, by eliminating hazardous synthetic pesticides in its production, it offers a healthy and sustainable future for farmers and their families.
Lil & Izzy Boutique has unveiled four new unisex pieces especially for Christmas. The range (suitable for newborns up to five-year-olds) includes a pyjama set (€30), zip baby grow (€30), winter white hat (€12) and dribble bib (€7) and is designed with a cute reindeer print.