I’d never really thought of solasonach as a family business, but after chatting to a business advisor this week, I realised that it absolutely is!
I’m the only full-time employee, but I just wouldn’t have a functional business without the very real, very practical support of various members of my family!
My husband, John, built the framework of the website last Spring so’s that I could plug in what I needed. With the excitement of the pandemic going digital was absolutely the only choice! Now he helps me whenever I learn new things about online shopping psychology and need to change something, but am too frightened to do it myself in case I break something. This week he’s been helping my try to sort out setting up an Amazon seller account (side note, this turns out to be too complicated for even a seasoned IT professional, and we’ve called it quits for now. International development will have to take an alternative route in the meantime).
My eldest daughter Maisie is doing her higher in graphic design. For a bit of practice, she designed my new logo for me. It’s very simple, but I absolutely love it! She also does the occasional spot of modelling for me. She’s allergic to wool which means this can’t be a regular gig for her unfortunately!
My middle daughter Eve does a bit more modelling for me (she’s not allergic to my entire business so this is really helpful!) I’d had plans before lockdown to try and recruit friends and business associates to model my products, so having some people to do it in house has meant I was still able to keep moving forwards! Eve also promotes me to her friends on Instagram, who diligently like my posts making me feel infinitely better about my relatively small following! She also wears my products, and seeing someone wearing what I’ve made is, for me at least, what it’s all about!
Both girls give me advice and support about my social media. As Gen Z they’ve grown up naturally with it, where I’m still catching up!
My Dad is finance and electrical support. He has funded many of my vital equipment purchases. My knitting machine was a birthday present whilst I was doing my degree. As a single mum I couldn’t always stay late working on the machines at uni, so having a home machine was absolutely invaluable. And now that same machine is the work horse of the business. He’s also responsible for the digital camera that allows me to take (hopefully ever improving) shots of my products. In these times when everything has moved online I wouldn’t have been able to keep going without it. And equally importantly as an electrical engineer, he was able to fit new lighting in my studio so’s that I could take halfway decent photos without having to wait for a suitably sunny day (no mean feat in Scotland).
My business would never have gotten started in the first place without my family’s support. Now with all the changes this last year has brought they’ve helped me bring my business online and start creating a presence which is meant I could not only keep going but develop my business and hopefully expand overseas!
I can honestly say that Solasonach is a family business with caring and fair family values. Everyone has an important part to play. Everyone’s opinions are important. And everyone is equally valued.
I hope I convey this sense of community to my customers as well. My aim, our aim, is to bring you the finest quality product and really bring you joy!