Today I’m talking to Romy, the founder of tiny and i, which is one of those ‘why didn’t I think of that’ products! These pretty, colorful and tactile products are designed with mothers in mind. Think little fingers with a strong grip that like to touch, play and PULL! Now mothers and their tiny people can have the best of both worlds, chic jewelry that is mummy and me friendly. It’s hard to pick a favorite from this collection, but when you do settle on the right pieces for your wardrobe, at least you know it will a) look gorgeous and b) stand up to the inquisitive grip of the precious people in your life.
Tell me a little about your background – what path led you to setting up tiny and i
After my first baby was born I realised that my job in healthcare wasn’t going to afford me the flexibility I wanted as a Mum. I wanted to spend as much time with my daughter as possible is the first years of her life before she went off to kindergarten. While living overseas, my little girl systematically broke most necklaces I owned by pulling or chewing on them. I decided to take action and design some baby friendly jewellery.
You have a lot to juggle with running a business and three kids! What does a typical day at work involve for you?
My work day is varied and untraditional. I work at a purpose built study nook in our family room in small blocks where I can during the day between school drop off and pick up and the girls sleep times. I usually get to sit down for a decent block of time at lunchtime and in the evenings once everyone is tucked up in bed. Lately, with my youngest daughter (8 weeks old) still waking for a feed during the night, I get a half hour of work done during the night feed too. It’s a very productive half hour with no interruptions.
What memorable responses have you had to your range?
I don’t get tired of being stopped on the street by ladies asking where my jewellery is from when wearing a tiny and i piece. I always flush pink but I walk away feeling proud. My favourite though is walking into a shop to have the store owner ask where my necklace is from as they would like to stock it.
What food, drink, song inspires you?
Chocolate, peanut butter, salted caramel. Anything gooey and rich and chocolatey… I made a fantastic batch of salted caramel last night and my hubby and I have just finished a bowl or chocolate brownie with peanut butter ice-cream and salted caramel sauce. It really is worth every calorie!
Where would you like to see tiny and i in five years?
I would love tiny and i to break into the international marketplace, introducing our designs to mums and bubs and stylish ladies all over the world.
What superpower would you have and why?
That’s easy. I could really do with a chitty chitty bang bang and, while I’m dreaming, the ability to make an vacant car spot appear wherever I need one.
What has been one of your favorite tiny and i products?
I’m loving the arc necklaces at the moment. The point of difference between the arc necklaces and other tiny and i designs are that the arc necklaces are so light you forget you are wearing them. They look great layered too.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
Buy a Thermomix. It has changed my life and freed up many hours of my time each week as well as allowing me to cook almost everything from scratch. My oldest daughter, Miss Four, refers to it as ‘Thermie’ and assumes everything that appears on the table or in her lunch box has been created in the thermomix. She is usually spot on!
Can you list for me your top creative resources across any media – ie websites or blogs you visit daily, magazines you can’t live without?
I love trawling pinterest but I keep getting sidetracked by the food and the ideas for little girls birthday parties. The pantone colour guides are my bible when creating new colourways. Not a day goes by without a glance at the www.hardtofind.com.au daily newsletter. I long for the days when I have time to pore over design mags but in the meantime I feel lucky if I get to read the weekend papers from cover to cover. I always start with the glossy lifestyle liftouts.
Beach or pool?
With the kiddies in tow, I’ll have to say pool. I do love a resort with a sand pool though and poolside cocktails on a hot day are almost unbeatable.