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17 January 2017

TantrumXYZ meets aden + anais

Mother-of-four Raegan Moya Jones founded aden + anais in 2006 - and, within months, her printed muslin swaddles had become a word-of-mouth sensation. Who better than Lisa Williams (pictured, right) - fellow creative powerhouse, and co-founder of TantrumXYZ - to interview the ultimate mumpreneur...


Lovely to meet you, Raegan. You are a regular exhibitor at Bubble. How does it compare to other tradeshows around the world, and what do you enjoy the most about it?
Bubble was the very first tradeshow I did when I started aden + anais, and from memory it was only the event’s second edition - so it was very new! It is a great tradeshow, as it attracts the most beautiful and innovative baby brands – and, in turn, the best stores and buyers. We are always in excellent company at Bubble shows.

With the swaddles, you have taken a nursery staple and elevated it completely; we know that you set up the business because you couldn’t source good Australian-style swaddles in New York, but how closely has your business followed your original strategy?
My goal from the outset was to make products that were the best thing you could use on your baby, and which made life easier for parents and caregivers. I also put a lot of effort into making them as beautiful as they were safe and practical. When we started over ten years ago, design-minded baby items were rare. Baby products all tended to scream 'I AM A BABY ITEM!' I wanted to make things that I would want to have in my own home. Our prints were original, and for the time, unusual.
We’ve grown so much in the past ten years, but that focus has remained: we only make things that serve a purpose, that we can not only do, but do well, and that are beautiful. Things that I would want in my own home, for my children.

Describe how it feels to see a celebrity as big as Beyonce using your products in public?
It’s always fun to see celebrities using our products, and still elicits a little bit of a double take - particularly as it has happened organically. The first celebrity who was ever spotted with one of our swaddles was Adam Sandler and his first child, walking on Malibu beach, and it was a shock as we had only been on the market for two weeks when that picture came out. We hadn’t sent them as a gift - it was something he and his wife had discovered on their own, or been given by a friend. It feels nice to know that parents – whether they’re famous or not – trust us with their children. I feel the same thrill when I’m out and about and see a mum using our products in an airport or on the tube. It’s fantastic.

You have worked with Disney on a range of muslins and swaddles (seen above, in Bubble's We've Got Chemistry installation); where do you go from there in terms of collaborations?
We have been fortunate enough to collaborate with a really great range of partners: Disney is our newest collaboration, which is just a great fit for us. We’ve been able to take these iconic characters that have been loved for generations, and put our unique aden + anais spin on them to create a beautiful line of products in our signature muslin. We never look for collaborations just for the sake of doing them; we’re looking for other brands that naturally fit what we’re doing, and who we are serving. We have some great collaborations in the works for 2017, so definitely stay tuned!

What is the benefit of being an online and wholesale retailer only? Are you likely ever to venture into the realm of bricks and mortar?
The benefits, for us, started from day one. Starting with a bricks and mortar store would have meant taking on a whole lot risk with a whole lot of overhead, for something nobody had heard of. Instead, I was able to get into trusted, stylish, beloved baby boutiques in all the major cities across America, where they could introduce my product to the customers I was hoping to attract. Those specialty boutiques – all around the world, now – have been instrumental in helping us grow our business organically and by word-of-mouth. Now, we’re online. We’re in boutiques. We’re in larger retailers. And all those channels make sense for us, as I have always believed that every baby should be wrapped in muslin- so the more access that parents have to it, the better...


See the latest from aden + anais at Bubble London this season! You can register for a free ticket here...

For more information about aden + anais please visit: www.adenandanais.co.uk
For more information about TantrumXYZ please visit: https://tantrum.xyz/

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