C&T Q&A: Handmade Business with a Newborn Baby??





handmade business with a baby

{Editor’s Note from Jess: While I usually answer most of our reader questions myself, today’s Q&A is answered by the lovely Katia, as this is one area in which I admittedly have zero experience! Mums (and Dads) please feel free to chime in your advice in the comments!}

Today’s question is by she who shall remain anonymous (you know who you are!), who writes:

I was wondering if you could please do a blog post about ‘How to keep your business alive while pregnant/ after kids’ or if you have perhaps done something similar already… if you have I couldn’t find it.

I recently found out that I’m pregnant (not yet at the 3 months telling people stage, so if you do a blog about this please keep it anon) and when I found out I started working like I was on death row. Determined to get several new products made (in bulk) photographed and ready to go so when the time was drawing near the business could tick over even if I didn’t have the energy to do much work. The last week the morning sickness hit and I’ve found motivation almost impossible.

The two friends with babies (neither of them creators) who I’ve talked to about continuing the biz after I’ve given birth both wave it off and say ‘oh you won’t have time for that’ and although I’d love to prove them wrong, I’ve never done this before so have no idea what it’s going to be like/ what to expect!

Help Jess, Help Create & Thrive! I’m determined to keep going, and would love advice from those who’ve gone before me!

Congratulations on your great news, how exciting!

I have a very similar situation, and although I have no experience just yet with running a business with a baby, I though I’d share what I am doing at the moment in preparation for the little one’s arrival.

About 6 months ago I found out that we are expecting a new addition.

It was an exciting and overwhelming time and, just like you, I started thinking that this is it, my creative days are over!


Luckily, I know a few friends with their own businesses and they reassured me that it’s all in the mindset.


Sure – there will be those first 3 months that you will probably have less time then ever and most definitely – as a one woman band – the production and sales will slow down.

I think as long as I keep the store open and not take custom orders for the first few months, it doesn’t seem impossible to make things ahead of time and run to the post office on the walks with the baby.

Being able to create is so important to me and I feel I won’t be the same person if I stop. Thus, I am determined to make it work!

There are a few things that will of course have to change and there is no doubt that there will be challenging times.

However, it’s very exciting and with a few things done ahead (made, photographed scheduled), I am determined that running my business with a baby will be possible.

Despite the fact that I’ve had some days with no energy at all, and others where I feel like nothing other than looking at baby things and renovating the nursery, I have been preparing my little business for the times to come.


Here’s what I’ve done.

1. As you’ve done, I am trying to make one creation a day that will go in the stock pile for those few month when I won’t be able to make much. I’ll be honest, some days are better then others but as long as I am making progress, I am happy.

2. I am releasing collections a month earlier then I would normally do. Simply because it takes me twice as long nowadays to get orders done. I give early bird offers to my newsletter subscribers and try to spread the orders evenly so I don’t get overwhelmed.

3. A few months before the due date, I will be making sure that I’ve got all the supplies for making so when I get a few minutes here and there, I don’t have to think about ordering things and waiting for them to arrive.

4. I let my customers know what’s happening and that I will have certain months off so they have a chance to place an order and know when I am ready to start taking enquiries again. The postage times will be changing for me as I post daily now but I do understand that it won’t be possible with the baby. I am going to change the policies and notifying about the days the orders will go out.

5. Having a shop full of ready to post goodies is my aim so I am tiding up the listings and taking items that I know will be impossible for me to make with less time and thinking of new creations that will take less time to make so I can offer a variety of things to buy.

6. I’ve asked for help. Luckily, my Mum is willing to give me a hand (whether it is with the baby or, maybe, a postal run once a week) which is wonderful!


Finally, I did notice that I am slowing down and getting the “baby brain” where I forget things so I try to ensure I have everything written down. I’m using more detailed notes then before: such as where to find the customer”s message and what needs to be done every day.

I would like to think that my ability to maintain a successful handmade business with a baby is not a false illusion I’m clinging to.

I watched my favourite bloggers having a baby and slowly getting back to doing things within 3-4 months with a few adjustments. It is definitely possible!

I believe that if Mum is happy, the baby is happy. And a creative mum that can do some crocheting & stitching while baby is sleeping is a happy Mum in my books.

Maybe there are a few Mums that run handmade businesses out there who can give advice to both of us?

Katia Donohoe

Katia Donohoe has written 10 posts in this blog.

Katia Donohoe is designer and maker behind Plushka’s Craft brand. Being of Russian heritage she treasures handmade crafts and love spending time creating things by hand. She cannot live without hand-stitching, hot chocolate and Mr. Plushkin, bright tights and suede shoes. She blogs at Plushka’s Craft where she writes about Plushka’s handmade creations, inspirations as well as her main craft passions – cross-stitch and crochet.


Grace Keogh

Oh My Giddy Aunt!!! I started reading the response assuming it was Jess … and thinking ‘What! How did I miss that bit of news!!” I had to stop after the first couple of paragraphs to go back to the top to see who was writing this reply… then I saw Jess’ Editor’s Note tucked under the picture. Phew… right… ok …. now I can go back and keep reading =D


Haha, noooo, not me! 🙂


Congratulations! I’m currently juggling a toddler, newborn (5 week old) and a handmade biz and my one tip would be to be kind to yourself. The first 3 months with a bub (and sleep deprivation) are hard enough as it is without putting extra pressure on yourself with your business. I made the difficult decision to temporarily close my website for a couple of months, I’m considering it to be self-funded maternity leave 🙂 I communicated this to my customers via a number of mailing list emails, an announcement on the website and also posts on my FB page. I let them know well in advance that this would be happening so they could get their orders in. I plan on have a re-launch sale to kick things off again when the dust has settled at home. I certainly found it easier the first time round with only a newborn to look after but things are a bit trickier with 2 to look after and any chance I get during the day when they are both asleep is my chance to rest rather than create.

All the best with your pregnancy 🙂

Stacey from Max & Me Designs


My experience is different because like many woman I didn’t start my business until after I had my son but I want to share my thoughts with you anyway.

Almost every mum I know is shocked by how hard being a mum is – you are tired, you are needed in way you’ve never been needed ad that alone is so draining – not to mention the physical impact pregnancy and breastfeeding can have on the body.

That being said almost every mum I know is filled with a new kind of energy and amazing amounts of creativity after having kids – I don’t know if it hormones, a new outlook or something else but it seems so common.

My advice for you is to be as prepared as you can be, do what you can to have ready made items, put systems in place, even look at extending your shipping times so you only need to head to the post office once a week instead of daily – all those sort of things.

BUT more importantly than that don’t set yourself too many expectations because every mum feels different about getting back to work and every baby will be different as well. Enjoy your time as a new mum and do what you can to keep the business running – you might find it easy than you think. But allow yourself to just sit and watch your new human grow – you business will be there, ready for you to pick up again when you and your family is ready.

Congrats and all the best on your new adventure!

amanda branham

First and foremost, congratulations! You will be tired beyond belief, but it’s worth every waking moment (and you will have a lot of those). I started my blog when I was pregnant, and it wasn’t until after my daughter was born that I realized I wanted to start a little handmade business. You can do it…but you may need to get some help. Have a friend or family member help with all the office type stuff while you focus on creating, and loving on your baby. Do what you can now, but don’t over-do it. Enjoy and embrace the moments – I wish I would have done that more in the beginning. There will be days when all you will literally do is snuggle, so be prepared for that and enjoy it. Making a schedule is definitely helpful, but know that it will change every day. That being said, kids do thrive in routines so try to stick to one as much as you can. You will know what you can handle, and only you will truly know that. You can fit in work during naps and when he/she falls asleep for the night, and I’m sure your family will love holding him/her while you work. Ask for help when you need it, and give yourself plenty of time to embrace all the joys and pitfalls of being a new mom!

Christina Lowry

I’m in the same boat, though with baby number three on the way. I’m a stay at home Mama and a jeweller. I’m confidant. I’ve run a business with two little children at home full time successfully, and I’m currently running a business with my five year old at Prep and my two year old at home full time with me. I too am working on collections to be released after the birth. I have taken on an intern at the moment to help out. And I am actually guest blogging on the Bespoke blog next week on Working from home with children. 🙂


If I could do it all again I’d put the business on holiday mode (no custom orders, no new stock, just sell what you have).
Because I didn’t, I suffered greatly with high expectations and it added to my post natal depression. You’ll need time to adjust, heal and enjoy this time so plan for it now.
Good luck.


Its totally doable. Schedules are important. If you can get your kid to sleep on a fairly regular schedule you shouldn’t have a problem. Just be ready to work in short periods, have everything organized so you can pick up and start again easily. Sleep yourself. While you are getting used to a new sleep schedule you will suffer a bit mentally,so take a cat nap before you start to work if you need to. Its definitely doable. Also use any help from family and friends because they can hold a baby while you wprk. Sometimes they’ll even clean your home while you change diapers and feed the little one then when baby sleeps they leave ans you can work in a clean home! Dont be afraid to ask for help.
Alicia mother of three, mother of twins and handmade business owner.


I have two children, both of whom I had after starting my business. My first daughter was born when my business was still very young. I was in graduate school full time and not doing a lot with my business at that time. My second daughter was a very different story. I landed my first wholesale account days before she was born, and when she was but a few months old, I got my first private label account.

First thing… Be kind to yourself. Take breaks as you need them. Naptime is to help you be a better mom, NOT to get caught up on work if you’re super-tired.

Second thing… Let your customers know about reduced stock availability and longer turn-around times.

Third thing (and most important)… Realize that this time is oh, so short – way too short! – in the grand scheme of life. Savor every single moment with your little one. All too soon it’ll be crawling and walking and talking, and you don’t want to miss a second of that.

Chrissy Foreman Cranitch

I felt absolutely the same when I found out I was pregnant!
Everyone was telling me that I wouldn’t have time for it and I wondered how I could get through life without time for my passion.

In the end, taking paid maternity leave summed it up for me – If I was on government paid maternity leave, I was legally unable to work for 14 weeks.
Ugh! In my pregnant days I was utterly petrified what this might do to my business, whether I’d lose customers etc.

But you know what? When I finally had bub and realised how much it rocked my world, I was actually grateful I wasn’t working. Those first few months, with breastfeeding, settling, trying to get some sleep in etc were so trying, that I think I would have exploded into a furball of mess, had I had to work on top of all that too.

The point is, my customers waited. They are all so busy with their own lives that a few months without sales didn’t stress them the least.
Plus, I still stayed active on my facebook page etc, so I still maintained a presence with my followers.
In fact, I felt more financially secure than ever, because I was being paid to stay at home and at that time, it meant I was earning more than my business usually created!

I wish you all the best and if you ever need anyone to talk to about managing business with bubs, please feel free to drop me a line.
Love Chrissy x

Baby on Board | imogenwilsonjewellery

[…] can read the Create & Thrive post here, thank you to everyone who commented, and of course Jess for fielding my question and sending it to […]

What say you?