The Mum Club Featuring Acorn & Pip
Acorn and Pip 'delivers an array of hand-picked, mindfully chosen children's items that will inspire happiness and inquisitiveness to every family they meet'. A venture begun at the start of motherhood, Lucy has the perfect eye for creating a brand that is cool and current. We first discovered them at their stool at Altrincham Market (South Manchester) which they host every Tuesday, but they mainly trade online and we urge you take a peak.
MY NAME IS Lucy and I am the founder of Acorn & Pip, an online children’s boutique.
I LIVE IN south Manchester with my husband Tim and my daughter Eden.
I FEEL MOST AT HOME when I get to relax in the company of my favorite people, rather than in a certain place. I grew up in London and then moved to Manchester in my late teens so I've always felt kind of split geographically and I don't really assign HOME to a place, I suppose the saying ‘home is where your heart is’ really applies to me. Even as an adult, I still have my mum & dad's number saved in my phone as HOME. My happy place is when we're all together, no phones, a big dinner, wine and story telling. Whether that's with friends, family or just me and my girl (minus the wine).
I AM A MUM AND a business owner and absolutely everything in between, as we all are. I started Acorn & Pip when I had Eden. I had the desire to have a personal project that I could grow and manage as my life evolved. I have always had a love for design and retail so my business was born! I was a languages teacher before having Eden and I have a real passion for education but I was becoming jaded with the system and felt let down a lot of the time with how teachers were not allowed to fully concentrate their job, so it was the right time for me to make a move. Since beginning my journey with Acorn & Pip I have found many different parts of myself that were perhaps hiding beforehand. I have found a love for photography, styling, and even spreadsheets (!!).
WHAT KEEPS YOU AWAKE AT NIGHT… At night I find it very hard to switch off as this is normally when I get to sit down and work. This means that when I get in to bed my head is still whirring and to-do lists start forming. I over think a lot since having Eden. I think when you have a child, the world becomes so much more delicate and I worry that I am doing the right thing for my family. This sounds quite intense doesn't it! I don't go to bed quivering beneath the sheets every night but I suppose it's just a constant thought that most parents have to live with. Mainly my to-do lists build-up at night but I have my own little systems for keeping that in check, like bullet journaling (or my version of it), keeping a DONE IT list to help me look back at what I have achieved, and I try not to drink coffee past 1pm.
I LOVE BEING A MUM BECAUSE... you have a buddy, someone that thinks you're awesome, even if you haven't brushed your teeth yet. I've loved connecting with other like-minded mums and women; they have been a real source of support and fun! I think being a mum has made me tap in to a lighter side of life, one where you can see the fun in the smallest things, like going to the park, playing with pots and pans, going to a petting zoo or even just going up and down the stairs for the millionth time in a row! Being a mum has made me grow-up, changed me in to a woman and I love that.
I WANTED TO BE WHEN I GREW UP… I really wanted to be a vet or someone who lived on a beach and did nothing. I didn't have the ability to be a vet; science wasn’t my thing. And doing nothing really isn’t my style (I think I’m a workaholic). But a beach isn’t out of the question though!
WOULD YOU HAVE DONE ANYTHING DIFFERENTLY IN YOUR LABOUR… I would have told my midwife that I could do it and not to rush me! I was in labour for two days and I felt that I was so close to doing it all myself but she was a ‘rule follower’ and called in the doctors. I mean come on! I'd been going strong since Friday night and on Sunday evening she said ‘NO. NO MORE.’ So I had to have some help. When I look back I wish I'd just said "come on, give me an hour more and I'll do it". But I didn't. But I did have a healthy baby and hindsight never helped anyone, did it?!
HARDEST PART OF MOTHERHOOD… the hardest part of my motherhood journey has been the sleep deprivation. Eden was a terrible sleeper and I was hurting to my core on some days. But then at 12 months old she just snapped out of it and I was slowing getting 5, 6, 7, 8 hours sleep again. Sleep deprivation will always be something that mums can unite over and I’ve formed lasting relationships with people based on the size of their under eye bags. One thing that I feel the weight of at the moment is raising a girl and eventually a woman. The media, the News, the Internet make the world a very scary place and I wonder how on earth my husband and I are going to remember to teach her everything we can on how to be safe, happy, free and kind. I suppose it just happens doesn’t it?
WHAT’S YOUR THING THAT KEEPS YOU SANE... Tim and Eden form a kind of gang when they’re together, always laughing, joking, playing and smiling. They definitely keep me sane. These moments are so light and happy, and thankfully, often!
I COULD NOT LIVE WITHOUT (PHYSICAL OBJECT)... At the moment my ‘happiness in a bottle’ – sweet orange essential oils. During my pregnancy I began to use oils and scents to help me relax and I have continued to use them postnatally. I have a lovely friend who runs an organic skincare company (Drops of Nature) and she is always on hand to give me the best oils. Sweet orange helps me to feel uplifted, de-stresses me and increases my appetite (when I feel run down, my appetite is the first thing to go and the thing which makes me feel lowest). I even wear it as perfume sometimes, I probably smell like a pack of skittles, but if I’m happy I really could care!
YOUR BIGGEST RISK… It was definitely starting Acorn & Pip. I had a great job as a teacher, with amazing kids and staff. I think all the time about how easy life was then but no way as fulfilling as what I have right now. The only real risk was financial, and life is worth so much more (another lesson I have to remember to teach my daughter).
YOUR BIGGEST ACCOMPLISHMENT... It’s hard to remember accomplishments pre-giving birth (as that’s pretty epic) but my main accomplishments in life are getting a good education, despite not really liking university, graduating from my Masters a month after giving birth and starting Acorn & Pip. Starting my business has pushed me way out of my comfort zone but I love it. I love meeting amazing suppliers, designers, toy geeks (it’s good to know I’m not the only one), photographers and traders.
YOUR BEST PIECE OF ADVICE… When my husband and I were writing our wedding vows 4 years ago, we chose to include the line ‘let’s always enjoy the little things in life, because one day we may look back and realise that they were the big things’. I always thought I knew what it meant, but in the last 15 months, it’s taken on a whole new meaning. Life can be funny like that I suppose.