Every now and then I stumble across a small business that I love, sometimes a shop I’ve visited, like TheCastle or sometimes a shop I find on Instagram. Wildfox Home is one of my all time favourite Instagram finds! It’s easy to get caught up in the mass produced cheap finds available on the high street, and there’s nothing really wrong with that, but nothing beats the special, personal treatment you get when you buy from a small business.
I recently had the opportunity of interviewing Helen from Wildfox Home and here she is answering some questions about her life and her business.
- Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and you family? I’m Helen, a mum of 3 (2 boys and a girl) and married to my husband, Mark. We have a pet cat called Millie who tends to behave more like a dog! I live in Northamptonshire in a gorgeous home that my husband and ! bought soon after we were married. I like chocolate, tea, shopping and cosy nights in on the sofa.
2. What motivated you to start Wildfox Home and how did the name come about?
When my youngest child started school I found myself at a bit of a loss. I had spent so many years raising my children that I didn’t even think about what to do once they were out of the house for several hours a day. I knew I needed to do something for myself.
A friend of mine ran a florist & gift shop in the town where I live. She invited me to lend her a hand with the flowers and general running of the gift shop during school hours. I LOVED it! I learnt so many new skills and it helped me to regain confidence in myself & my abilities.
I have always loved making a home and finding unique & quality home décor. My florist friends encouraged me to pursue this avenue so Wildfox Home was born! Since starting my business my circle of friends and networking contacts has really increased. People are so supportive & helpful in the small business world!
As for the coming up with the name…. it just kind of happened. I was bouncing around some ideas with a friend one day. We were trying to think of names that were simple yet had a bit of a country chic feel to them. Out of blue came Wildfox Home and it kinda stuck!
3. Is this your full time job or do you have a day job?
Wildfox Home has its own website, is stocked in a few local shops / cafés and I attend numerous shopping events so it takes up a lot of my time. Between that and raising 3 children I have my hands full!
4. What items do you stock and how do you decide what to stock?
I stock home décor accessories, scented candles, kitchen / dining goods, candle holders and LED battery lights.
When stocking products for Wildfox Home I kind of follow the mantra for my own home. I am looking for quality yet affordable goods that offer value for money. By that I mean when you buy something it should be able to fit in with any décor, room or colour scheme.
A lot of what I stock is made from natural materials or are in neutral colours. These sort of items never date or go out of fashion. If you were to change your colour scheme or move house, you would still be able to use your Wildfox Home purchase. I also try to stock items that can be used all year round. For example, one of my best sellers is the LED stars in a bottle .This item looks right at home on a sideboard at Christmas time but would look equally good on the patio table on a balmy summers evening. That is what I mean by value for money.
5. Do you showcase your items in your own home?
I try to, but I am running out of room. I do really love the product ranges that I bring in so it is very tempting to ‘keep’ some of them.
6. How does it feel when you see your homewares photographed in your customer’s homes?
Awesome! It is so lovely when customers report back with their feedback or better still, they send me photos. I am so proud to be part of their home building journey. It sounds cliché but It really is one of the best parts of the job.
Helen’s stars photographed in my home
7. What plans do you have for the future of the business?
So many plans!!! It’s exciting!
My plan for the immediate future is to grow the website side of the business as this is the area of the business I feel has the most potential. To be able to connect with & supply to customers all over the UK would be fabulous.
A lot of effort is going into the social media side of Wildfox Home. This year I started posting household tip videos onto my Facebook page. They have proved to be really popular with my fan base and many of them still talk about the ‘spaghetti’ hack even now! So going forward I will be making more of these videos. I am also considering setting up a Facebook community group so that myself and members can share tips, news or ask questions about anything home related.
I also need to get to grips with Pinterest as this is a social media channel that could really benefit my business.
I do have some big events lined up this year as well. Events are a great way for me to meet customers and find out what it is they like.
I do want to extend my product range over the next few years. I want to include more products designed and made by British artisans. There is so much exciting & creative talent out there.
If you haven’t already, check out Wildfox Home on Instagram here. I promise you won’t be disappointed!