Sweet Pea & Little Wolf – this business name conjures up all sorts of lovely images in your mind, and meeting Emma Purchase, you’d think just the same thing! Emma, the founder of Sweet Pea & Little Wolf, who recently gave an inspiring speech at our Summer Social Business Club, is just that – inspiring and a breath of fresh air!
Just look at how she describes her business!
‘Sweet Pea brings the delicious range of herbal tea, Little Wolf brings the neat range of wanderlust themed enamel mugs, clothing and accessories. Together they make the ultimate team.’
|Emma and her girls!|
But we all know being self-employed and running your own business is A LOT of hard work, but for Emma she faced challenges, some bigger than other head on, and her story of how she set up Sweet Pea & Little Wolf, is a truly motivational one!
Emma told us; ‘I decided to start up my own business for a few reasons. I am a single mother to 4 beautiful strong girls, and I have a need to show them that with a lot of determination and hard work you can achieve something amazing! And I also needed to be more financially independent and this is one of the reasons that spurs me on when I’m working away into the early hours!’
|Some of Emma's lovely stock!|
But there were other even deeper reasons which motivated Emma to start her own business. When her Father became ill with Motor Neurone Disease she felt even more motivated; ‘It really did shock me into realising that time is very limited!’ And she came up with some rules for herself;
‘You have to use your time sensibility, push boundaries, get outside your comfort zone and take risks!’
And take risks she did! For Emma even setting up her business was a big risk! And she told us; ‘One of my big struggles was having absolutely no capital. None! I’m a single mum and a student, so I had to think smart, use the resources that I did have and work harder than most, never giving up!’
|Emma's clothing modelled|
These challenges lead to Emma getting in touch with The Women’s Organisation where she was paired up with Senior Business Adviser; Claire Pedersen, and she had some lovely things to say about the work she did with Claire!
‘For every no I got from every other avenue, Claire said yes! She said ‘Yes, we can do this, there has to be away around this’ I now consider Claire a friend and her support and advice has been priceless. It was so nerve racking trying to always push forward, but having Claire’s support was amazing.’
So, whilst working alongside The Women’s Organisation, Emma was continually striving to build her business more and more, and her tenacity and determination is unparalleled, facing all barriers head on!
Emma told us; ‘One problem I found was not having a car, so I usually try and hump most of my bags and stock on the bus which is quite comical! And I’ll walk for miles with my stock to save money too!’
|More of some of Emma's lovely gifts|
Now things are going well with her business, and Emma is able to rent out spaces in four different shops to sell her stock in! (Gifts For Me & You, Practical Magic Vintage, Red Brick Vintage and Siren) and spend her days doing what she loves!
Emma told us; ‘The best thing about starting up my own business is being a bit more in control of my time so I can spend it with my daughters! Also, it’s about having that pride in my work, when I see someone wearing my t-shirt, it is so rewarding!’
AND – What advice can she offer anyone else who is thinking about taking a leap, and starting their own business?
‘Just make the start! We all put things off. Sometimes we are too scared to make the first step, but seriously…Life is way too short – Just leap!’
You heard Emma…Just leap!