Catch up with Beth Elsdon from Walter & May after one year in business

One of our favourite things is catching up with women we’ve interviewed and finding out how their journey has unfolded. So we’re delighted to catch up with Beth Eldson, founder of Walter & May, one year after her launch.

Where have the past 12 months gone?

Much like my baby’s first year, I am sat wondering where the past 12 months have gone. One year in business, 12 super speedy months of up and downs, happiness and tears, passion and pain. In all honesty, it’s the hardest journey I have ever taken.

I remember, in my first interview with Talented Ladies Club, one of my top tips to anyone starting out in business was not to underestimate the support you would need from family and friends to get through the journey with your sanity intact.

Trethowans

Well since I am being honest here, I must admit that I underestimated it – by a factor of about 100!

The courage, strength, humour and passion needed to set up and run a business on your own is huge, and my hat comes off to all those women out there nailing it! But you can do it. You can do anything, but not everything.

All you can see are the things that aren’t perfect

A quote I heard recently and oh my word did this ring true is: “As women in business the pressure is huge and we are our own harshest critic.”

When you live and breathe your business and put every ounce of energy in to it, sometimes all you can see are all the things that are not perfect. The font that doesn’t quite work. The copy that doesn’t read quite right.

Thinking like this can not only slow your progress down, but also seriously affect your mindset. We forget that we are running a business, a family, a house and on most days managing to brush our hair. In my book that’s a huge achievement and one to be proud of.

Would I do it again? Yes!

Now having said all that, if you were to ask me now would I do it all again, I would say ‘hell yes’! It has been the hardest 12 months of my life but also the most rewarding. I have learnt so much about myself – the good, the bad and the downright ugly.

I have learnt from mistakes. I have learnt so many new skills, things I didn’t even imagine ever doing or even know existing and I am proud of that.

I have been able to enjoy special mention assemblies, without the work guilt. Cheer on the egg and spoon race at sports day, shed a tear at Polly’s first nativity and have a guilt free duvet day when we have a bug infested house.

That is priceless and no matter how many bad days are mixed in with the good – it is so worth it.

We now have over 160 talented businesses on board

The business itself has seen huge growth. We now have over 160 amazingly talented creative businesses on board with over 2,500 gorgeous products. We do all the admin for the sellers in terms of product listing so that is no mean feat!

I now have an amazing mini team who I could not do without. We have some big plans for this year and we are so excited to see what the next 12 months brings.

I’ve finally launched the Quirkarium

Every day I meet new businesses, and every day I am blown away by the talent I see. We were so excited recently to finally launch Quirkarium, which is the support and creative agency for our own sellers and any small, creative business.

We know what it takes to shine online so we use our knowledge and skill to help other creative businesses grow. We offer photography, social media support, design and branding and business mentoring.

We planned a week of celebrations for our first birthday, and very much like my own children’s party- oh my word was I exhausted at the end!

Each week, in fact each day, we add even more gorgeousness to the website from our amazing team who continue to inspire me every. I’d just like to say a big thank you to all our customers and followers for being totally amazing. We have some big plans for this year and we are so super excited to see what the next 12 months brings.

You can find out more about Walter & May on their website.