When did you set up your business and why?
We’re a sister duo based in Tipperary and when Covid hit, we - like many families - were going a little stir crazy.
When lockdown made our world a smaller and darker place, we teamed up to build something full of colour and life.
Nettle & Ivy started out as a way to gift family and friends thoughtful keepsakes for their little ones during a time when we couldn’t celebrate with them.
The requests for our personalised prints kept coming and we have been overwhelmed and so grateful for the support for our work.
Can you explain your process?
We wanted to create personalised gifts that were reminiscent of our childhoods growing up in the Irish countryside. We also wanted to celebrate the Irish language and so we incorporated Irish meanings into our designs.
Each personalised print has an Irish and an English version to choose from and customers are able to personalise their design with their child’s name and date of birth. Each print is finished with a double mount, which is custom-made by our local framer Seán.
Finally, we gift wrap each print and postage is included for free on all our prints. We also design cushions, alphabets and are branching out into home decor soon.
What is your best seller?
Our best sellers are our personalised children’s prints. Our Irish designs are very popular for gift ideas for new parents in Ireland and also for sending abroad.
What is it about your business that brings you joy?
Our customers bring us so much joy. Their feedback melts our hearts, puts the biggest smiles on our faces and from time to time, gets us dancing giddily around our kitchen.
They have helped us turn a hobby into a dream, given us ideas for new products and lifted our spirits when we were struggling. We’re so grateful for their support.
What are your hopes for 2023?
We are always looking for more creative inspiration for new and better designs. Hopefully, we will have lots more exciting new releases.
Currently, we are looking at trying out some markets and possibly looking into selling in a national retailer.
What advice would you give to another start-up business?
Social media has been a big help for us. We went from thinking we would never get more than 100 followers to now having over 5,000 in two years.
We have made friends with other small businesses and discovered another world of Irish creativity we never would have known about.
It’s really inspiring to get to know other people out there doing something similar and it helps to keep us motivated.
So, reach out to other small businesses for collaborations and also support. It’s a wonderful community of Irish small businesses working together.