CrowdInk had a chance to sit down (virtually) with a representative of Fox and Folk, a community that imparts culture onto young children wanting to learn about their Irish roots.
CrowdInk: Can you tell us what Fox and Folk is all about?
Fox and Folk: Fox and Folk is a community focused on helping parents in Australia to raise confident, happy children who are proud of their Gaelic (Irish) heritage. Our children come from a long line of brave warriors (both male and female!), and they love to hear about it! We do this through our blog, our folklore, and Members’ Rooms and the enchanting products available in our Wee Shop.
CI: What was your inspiration behind Fox & Folk?
FF: People always want to know how an Aussie like me came to be running a business focused on Gaelic families. The simple truth is, I’m the mother of three half-Irish children and have Irish heritage myself; I’m also part of a Gaelic family. When I first became a mother, I completely underestimated the role that heritage has on your confidence and sense of belonging as a child. It wasn’t until a teacher made a random, thoughtless comment about my son’s name one day that I saw the full impact of not being proud of who you are and where you come from. That day I realised that unless I found a way to help my son to feel a connection to his heritage, it would impact his sense of belonging and, ultimately, his self-worth. I knew that there had to be other families like mine, who are raising Gaelic children in Australia and are looking for ways to teach them pride in our culture. So I decided to create a community for them. For us.
CI: What has been the biggest challenge in setting up this business/blog? How did you overcome it?
FF: For me, being a one-girl show was the biggest challenge. From web design to stock takes and everything in between, there is always something to be done. I overcame this by bringing my sister on board – I write and she illustrates all of my stories. We attend markets and festivals together and it’s great to have someone who is as completely hooked on Celtic mythology and folklore as I am. Plus, she’s amazingly talented! I had a crowd at the printers one day when I was collecting her drawings and three strangers started arguing over which of her illustrations was the best!
CI: What are some of your bestsellers on the WEE shop?
FF: The stories are our biggest sellers. The feedback has blown me away and some of my biggest fans are adults! They’re closely followed by our Fairy Crowns. I think it’s because they’re custom made by a professional florist (again, my sister) and can be worn by everyone from birthday girls to Flower Girls.
CI: What is your number 1 tip for aspiring entrepreneurs/people looking to start a blog?
FF: Be more than passionate about the topic that you’re interested in, because you’ll need to be writing about it, talking about it, living and breathing it. It needs to be something that you absolutely can’t live without doing!
CI: What are your goals for the next 12 months?
FF: When I worked in Ireland a few years ago, my company would spend one day each year volunteering with Barnardos Ireland. I’ve seen first-hand the good work that they do for underprivileged kids. This year, Fox and Folk have pledged $1 from every Tutu sold to Barnardos Ireland; $1 from every Tee-shirt to Barnardos Scotland; and $1 from every fairy crown to Barnardos Australia. So my goal for the next 12 months is to be able to write a massive cheque for Barnardos and help as much as we can!