Hooray, I have found another incredibly talented little Miss who has managed to turn her love of design into a successful business... read on to find out more about this creative soul.
Creative Soul: Mekaela Ferrero
Company: Ruby & Belle
Lives: Brisbane, QLD, Australia
I only discovered childrens brand, Ruby & Belle a few weeks ago while meandering my way around the internet (...wasting hour after hour, looking at insanely beautiful things!). I immediately fell in love with the gorgeous offerings of designer and owner, Mekaela Ferrero - her mix of bright colours, whimsical prints and sweet designs are totally captivating. With a background in boutique bridal and fashion design, its little wonder that her blog and online shop are such a bounty of creative magic... find out what makes this crafty Mum tick.
WHEN YOU WERE A KID, WHAT DID YOU WANT TO BE WHEN YOU GREW UP?
I wanted to be a fashion designer. I've been obsessed with sewing since I could hold a needle and always had some crafty project on the go.
WHAT IS YOUR DESIGN BACKGROUND?
I completed a Fashion Technology course at Tafe straight after school and after a couple of years traveling overseas I returned to Sydney where I studied a Bachelor of Design, Fashion and Textile at UTS. Following that, I had my own bridal boutique in Newport on Sydney's Norther Beaches. I moved the business to home when I had my children and continued making dresses until my second child was born.
WHAT WAS YOUR INSPIRATION FOR STARTING RUBY & BELLE?
I have been doing markets on and off for about 10 years and started my first label, Ruby Rosebud Designs prior to moving to Brisbane in 2009. I gave the business a make-over when it progressed from a hobby to a busy home based job. I have always loved the crafty side of sewing and this was a perfect way for me to be able to stay home and be a Mum as well.
WHERE DO YOU FIND INSPIRATION WHEN DREAMING UP A NEW PRODUCT OR COLLECTION?
I have a magazine addiction and will often take inspiration from there - I like to try and recreate things in my own vision. Some things just evolve... my handmade birdcages came from my business logo that my graphic artist and I came up with. Originally I made two just to hang in my market stall as decoration and ended up selling them both on the first day!
WHAT IS THE MOST CHALLENGING ASPECT OF HAVING A DESIGN BUSINESS?Balancing work and family time is the biggest challenge. Also, the market and handmade industry has taken off in a big way over the past couple of years, so there is a lot of competition now. It can be difficult to maintain original products so trying to introduce new ideas and knowing when to let old ones go can be tricky.
WHERE CAN PEOPLE BUY YOUR PRODUCTS?
Ruby & Belle online - the website will be getting progressively updated over the next couple of months. I'm a stall holder at the Boutique Markets in Hamilton Wharf, Mathilda's Markets in Ascot (next market: Sat 6th August - look for me in the white marquee outside) and The Butterfly Tree baby and kids market, on the Gold Coast.
WHAT ARE YOUR TOP 'DESIGN' WEBSITES?
I'm a self-confessed internet junkie and more of a blog hopper but these are a couple of my favourites:
THANKS Mekaela for sharing your story with us!