Winners of the Ballantynes Dragon’s Den style initiative ‘Back to the Boardroom’ Lianne de Jong and Lee Scheepers (Marlee + Jo) have mastered the art of mixing business and babies. They talk to Metropol about their recent coup – taking out top spot in the business challenge – and winning the right to have their book created and sold by Ballantynes in Christchurch and Timaru for one year. 1. Tell us about why you entered the competition We heard about the competition through quite a few friends of ours - all of them wanted us to enter and prompted us to do so because they believed in our product. We also love Ballantynes and felt The Baby Book would fit in perfectly with their exclusive image. 2. What inspired the creation of your product? When we became mums we found it really hard to find the perfect baby book to record our babies’ milestones. They were all lacking in style and content so we decided to create our own which goes from birth up to age five and even includes the first day of school. We both have a background in graphic design and fashion and we like staying on top of current trends. That’s why we chose to go with the stylish monochromatic theme to keep it gender neutral and we did the hand illustrations ourselves to make it unique. This allowed us to create the exact images we needed for each carefully thought out page.
We spent a lot of time finding the exact questions and information we wanted to include in order to document all the special moments of our own little ones based on our experience as mothers. We wanted to make sure there was enough space to add photos, artworks, invitations or other keepsakes so we added a lot of beautifully illustrated pages for this purpose, which also look fabulous if you choose to leave them blank. 3. How do you juggle motherhood with all the other demands on your time? Motherhood will always come first. Our children are still pre-school age and they are our biggest priority during this stage of life. That is why we would work at night when the kids are asleep. We meet at our local coffee shop, our “office”, to discuss, brainstorm and do planning. During the rest of the week we would work from home in the evenings or during the kids’ nap times during the day.
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Ray White Merivale 174a Papanui Road (03) 929 0272 • 0272 28 28 46 rwmerivale.co.nz 16 October 20, 2016 Metropol