I am a supporter of small businesses, especially those set up by mums who have created them to earn a living whilst still spending quality time around their children as they grow up. I am lucky to be in a Whatsapp group with some amazing mums who fall in this category and one whose creativity stands out is Bharti Lim of Beeutiful Creations by Bee.
Hi Bee, Welcome to No Mum Is An Island. I am a great believer that no mum or dad should have to do everything themselves, we can’t possibly know it all, and we need all the support we can get, there is a wealth of information out there to help us upgrade our parenting experience, to make our lives easier and this website is a hub for just that! We love you have upgraded your life by creating a small business from home in order for you to work part-time around your children.
Can you tell us why you set up Beeutiful Creations by Bee?
I set up the business whilst I was on maternity leave originally to give me something to do that wasn’t baby related and also as I was considering giving up my career to spend more time with my baby. I work in a career where part-time roles are really hard to come by and I didn’t want to return to work 5 days a week.
What does owning your own business means to you?
My business has become my creative outlet. It is different from my day job and is not child related and gives me an identity which is different from the other two. I have met so many wonderful people through the business, it gives me something I can control and grow in a way that I would like and the ability to give back in various ways.
You make all the Beeutiful Creations designs yourself can you tell us about that process?
Most of the designs, I would say 90% are created from scratch with a few that are purchased and I add my own twist to them to make them more unique. The process varies for different products. Some a printed on a special printer and others are designs, cut and then have to be heat pressed onto the fabric. I make a variety of items so I need different equipment for different products.
A percentage of your sales go to the Counselling Foundation can you tell us why?
The counselling foundation allows those on low incomes to access counselling and support when they need it. Counselling is expensive and often a longer term process and the cost can mount up. I have myself gone to counselling after suffering from postnatal depression and I really believe that counselling is what helped me to get to a “better state of mind”. I believe everyone should have access to counselling and it should not just be for those that can afford it. My business allows me to share not only my story and help others but means I can donate to the counselling foundation and help others access the support that could save someone’s life.
You created a Beeutiful Creations ‘Hope’ T-shirt during Lockdown that was a huge success can you share the story around that?
Sadly my nan of 105 years old passed away early on during the pandemic of covid-19. We could not have a funeral so she asked us before she died to donate the money that we would spend on flowers to a good cause. I have lots of friends that work in hospitals who were telling me that they were short of PPE and I found a website that explained how to make visors. As I craft I could easily make them but could not afford to buy spend lots on materials. I did donate the money I would have spent on flowers making some and then when the t-shirt idea came to be I thought I could use the profits from t-shirt sales to fund the materials for visors. I was not expecting the response I got from my customers. Thinking I would only sell 20-30 and raise a few hundred pounds I actually sold over 500 and raised nearly £5000.
What advice would you give to other parents who are thinking of setting up a side business?
Running a business is tough around little people and it often means working at night and weekends. If you are going to start a business it needs to be something you are passionate about. When you haven’t slept or your day was busy with the children and you then have to work in the evening it needs to feel like an escape and not a chore. Do lots of research before you start and just try! You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.