The Brains behind Bombelino
A born entrepreneur, from holiday programmes, importing fabric, gourmet milkshakes and more, you just know this mama has a hunger to make it happen. Ayesha and I have been chatting and I got to see some sneak peeks of the most amazing things she has in the pipe line. Recently you would have seen her gorgeous Real Life milestone cards, this is just a taste of what is to come from Ayesha and Bombelino.
So read on and get to know this new kid on the block…
Tell us a little about yourself and how you came about starting Bombelino?
I’m a sometime stilleto-wearing-mom to two boys; Ahmed, who is 5 years old and Zayd, who is two. I love coffee as much as I love tea (yes, it’s possible). Books are my escape form and my weakness. I try to eat healthy but I love food so balance is important to me. Summer is my favourite time of the year and you will find me all bundled up at the slightest drop in temperature. I love my home city, Durban and don’t think I could live away from the seaside.
I’m a qualified chartered accountant by profession. Shortly after the birth of my first son, I resigned and consulted for a short period, after which I made the decision to take a sabbatical of sorts to be fully present to raise my son.
They say necessity is the mother of invention. In my search for a suitable pacifier strap for my son, Zayd, who suffered from severe reflux, I stumbled into my business and discovered a passion for design of premium baby and kids products. And so Bombelino was born.
What are you products, and how did you want them to be different to what is one the market already?
I’ve released a set of ‘Keeping It Real’ milestone cards with other products in the pipeline. Bombelino is a collection for the modern, urban parent, where practicality meets aesthetics.
I have a gazillion product ideas but I also want to make sure that each item released is fully developed before just putting an idea out there. Having the funds to release immediately is also a key factor.
Vision behind the name?
Bombelino is my sister’s pet name for my 5 year old son Ahmed. It’s a derivative of Bombolonas/ bombolini which is a filled doughnut, Italian dessert.
(I did not know what this dessert was… so I had to ‘google’ it… here is a photo)
Where you always an entrepreneur?
I’ve always looked at opportunities and gaps in the market or ways to capitalise on existing markets. As a student I had started a holiday programme for kids before it became the popular thing to do, and at one point after university, my love for things that sparkle led me to importing designer fabric. After being a full time stay at home mom for some time, I began to feel a sense of restlessness and realised that the desire to have my own business lingered. This eventually led to my sister and I starting a pop up craft milkshake and gourmet mocktail bar, For Shakes’ Sake which caters for corporate and private clients.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
I’m inspired by my mommy journey and by my environment. My mind never quite switches off. It may be a fabric print or something as random as a Frisbee which I was playing with my son which inspired me recently.
What is your preferred design aesthetic?
I’m a monochromist (is there even such a word) and prefer ‘scandi’ inspired palettes which are accentuated by shades of blush pink, leather and metallics particularly rose gold.
It’s not easy being a mom and starting your own business, do you have any advice on how to get things going?
It’s easier to have ideas than to actually execute them, breaking down your dream goal into smaller actionable goals makes the impossible doable. Having a support system to whom you can turn for help and guidance has been my saving grace!
How do you balance work and social life?
The key has been planning and setting aside time to focus on work but when it’s time for the kids and family I want to be fully present. It’s been a bit if a struggle for me since I find it difficult to ‘switch off’ but I’ve since put measures in place to make it easier. Granted there are times when you will need to be flexible. In the end it’s what you make of it.
What was your favourite toy as a Child?
So clichéd, but I loved my doll house. It was a little girls dream come true and all the more special because I know my mum went out of her way to get me one.
Did you have a movie or cartoon that you loved?
I loved waking early on Saturday mornings to catch the cartoons, on what was then KTV. There was a movie called The Gnome Mobile. I cannot for the life of me recall exactly what it was exactly about, but I do remember loving watching it and having my mum hire it a few times over. My favourite Disney movie was Aladdin.
Were you a play outside and build forts or dress your doll for days?
Mostly a play outside child, I have fond memories of making mud pies in my gran’s back yard with my cousins and taking walks to the park around the corner.
If you could go back to your childhood and do up your room yourself, what would it look like.
I have a cousin who had, what was to me then the most beautiful room. She had soft pink cupboard doors and a Barbie doll section. She had these huge glass jars in which she collected bouncing balls which I thought was just the coolest thing. If you had asked young Ayesha what she wanted, this would be it.
I’m about to start redecorating my son’s room and as much as I have a vision for the room, I want to involve him in the process so that he feels that’s it’s as much ‘his’ space as opposed to a room I chose whilst still keeping to a certain aesthetic that appeals to the monochromist in me 😉
To find out more say hello on insta @Bombelino