So this is my first time writing a blog so you will have to bear with me whilst I surmise my Carrie Bradshaw voice in my head to get this down on paper.
Where to begin? What a crazy, rewarding, heartbreaking and fun 2 years we have had. From day one since Katrina Payne and myself Nicole Dietrich joined forces, it has been idea after idea, laugh after laugh and tear after tear. Man starting a business is a tricky business. They say it takes 5 years to start a new business, and moving into our third year, we could not be happier with where restore grace is today. We have so much in store for 2017 we are bursting at the seams! No pun intended.
With a passion for interior design, this business is what fuels us. Sewing creating, designing every day. As hard as it is, what would we do without it? Katrina a wife and mum of 3 to Miss Emily May, 4, Jack Benjamin, 2 and newborn baby princess Miss Anna Grace, keeping up with the demand is super hard work. I, however am new to the whole Mum business. I have a little newborn bub named Finn. Only 2 weeks younger than Miss Anna Payne, what delightful little best friends they will be! So here I am, stay at home mum, husband at work, baby asleep on my lap, trying to keep up.
Katrina and I are business partners as well as sisters in law, but most importantly, great friends. Quite the little team we make! Lucky we are family as no request for help, question of advise or babysitting duties are too big or too small!
Katrina and I have slowly combined our ideas and designs together over the years to form a strong cohesive style that is restore grace. We both began with such contrasting styles, Katrina, so classic and light, myself, so bold, so bright! Its amazing how our 2 styles have combined together to be what it is today. Our homes however, so different to each other. But I will save that for another blog, another day.
So what do we do? Katrina, the brains, runs all aspects of admin, bookings, finances, insurance etc etc and I sort out all this social media stuff, blogs, facebook, instagram and advertising. That is the stuff that runs in the background of our beautiful products we sell. We create our designs, source the fabric and materials, usually from overseas, sew, create, make, all of our products, by hand, by us.
So whats with the name? We get that alot. When on site in Cooma or Canberra with our huge 3 x 6m market stall set up, theres always someone who just needs to know, where did restore grace come from?
Katrina completed her Diploma of Interior Design through TAFE in Canberra before moving to Brisbane. After Em was born Katrina and husband Matt decided to move home to Cooma, where Katrina began her business, Finding Grace. She had her first market stall at the Cooma Markets in November 2013 and continued holding stalls with frames, cushions, notice boards and much more until February 2015, when she asked me to tag along to the Jindabyne Flowing Festival markets and hold a stall with her.
At our first market together we had alot of people ask us for our business card and to be honest it was a bit of a fumble, "Oh did you want my card or hers? Which product were you looking at? Oh thats mine. Here is my card."
I really dont think that Katrina and I discussed our future together at this point but we decided that we needed a name or business card that combines both of our business' for the purpose of markets.
I had studied a Diploma of Interior design in 2014 and had started making some of my own creations to sell too, such as our ever popular floor cushions and macrame plant hangers. During my studies part of our module was to create your own business name and logo. At the time I was doing a bit of sanding and doing up old chairs and light shades so I came up with the name the Re-store.
So half Finding Grace, half the Re-Store - restore grace.
I designed a logo that we went back and forth with until we came up with our 'splash' logo, added 'restore grace', a couple of details, made a facebook page and got some business cards printed.
To be totally honest, I don't think Katrina and I ever really discussed our future together from that day it just went full speed ahead. Lucky we both have the same aspirations for the business.
That was that, and this is us now. An online business and markets. Indoor/Outdoor and floor cushions, home and plant decor, childrens and nursery range.
Expanding every day. Growing every day. Learning every day.
Nicole and Katrina x