This week I chat to the wonderful Amanda Peffer, founder of the best-selling, award winning Blade & Rose baby leggings brand. I first met Amanda in 2010 when she was first starting out and she brought her initial few designs into the shop I was working in. Having never seen anything like this before it was exciting to become stockists to something so new on the market. It has been amazing to watch the brand grow into what it has become today yet family is still very much at the heart of the business.
1) How did your business come about?
10 years ago, scary how quick this has gone. I founded Blade & Rose during my maternity leave naming the company after my babies Harvey Blade & Issey Rose. I was inspired by my then 3 month old daughter, who always had the bottom of her leggings on show. At the time there was nothing on the market that embraced the beautiful crawling nappy bottom. So I decided to design a fun range of leggings around this concept. A major component of the development was to ensure that the quality of the fabric was durable, functional, would wash well and most importantly, that was soft and kind to children’s delicate skin. The business started in our front room initially with 3 designs. People just loved this new design and concept right from the start which gave me the drive to increase the range. My husband left his job to help me with the demand for Blade & Rose. Fast forward 10 years and we have 18 staff, a warehouse in Kendal and a crazy amount of designs. We are still a family run business and am very proud of how we have grown.
2) What advice would you give someone wanting to start their own business?
Ensure you have done your research, don't go too crazy, grow slowly to start with to ensure there is demand for your product. Have the passion, drive and belief in your product.
3) What's the best thing about being your own boss? What's the worst?
It's got to be pride in developing a product, brand that people love. It is still overwhelming after 10 yrs, I get so excited to see little ones wearing Blade & Rose when I am out and about :-) Worse bit is that you never really switch off, it's not a 9 to 5 job you will always be working, thinking of new ideas, new technology, shows, forecasting, marketing the list goes on
4) How has lockdown been for you? What coping mechanism works for you? Have you had to adapt your business to fit in with the 'new normal'?
Well it's been a stress, like everyone though really. We have managed to stay afloat as we do have our own online shop so this has enabled us to survive through this really scary time.
5) Where's your 'Happy Place'?
Playing out in the beautiful Lakes where I am so lucky to live with my family and dog Lexie.
6) What's your favourite song?
My spotify playlist to 3 are Chilled Ibiza/Ministry Of sound, Funk & soul Classics, Prince and Queen. Very varied!
7) Who would play you in a movie?
Wonder Woman would be pretty cool
8) What did you want to be when you were younger?
I loved and still do love horses. I wanted to be a professional show jumper
9) What advice would you give your younger self?
Enjoy being young it goes too quick :-)
Thanks so much for taking the time to take part Amanda. You already are Wonder Woman!
Check out the new designs that have just arrived from Blade & Rose at https://www.willowboutique1.co.uk/blade-and-rose