BRAND NAME: He and Her the label
DESIGNER: Rachel Ussher
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN IN BUSINESS: 4 years
DESCRIBE HE & HER IN 3 WORDS: Quality | Individual | Fun
 
WHAT DID YOU DO BEFORE BEGINNING HE & HER? 
I used to work as a woman wear designer. When I got pregnant with our first child (Florin) I started looking around for clothes that I loved.. but could't find much. So naturally, I decided to design my own, and from there He and Her was birthed.
YOU BEGAN HE & HER TO OFFER MORE GENDER NEUTRAL BASICS. HOW HAVE YOU FOUND THE RESPONSE TO THIS AND AFTER A FEW SEASONS, HAVE YOU FOUND THIS HAS EVOLVED OR CHANGED? 
 
5 years ago when I had Florin there wasn't much of an offering of plain basics that weren't bright pink or had giraffes and elephants on them.. haha! So we started with prints we designed and paired it back with basics that weren't too bright and bold. We didn't realise how many people were actually looking for the same thing until we launched.. Since then our basics and our prints have become a real staple for our customers. We've worked hard on perfecting our fits so that both our prints and basics are super comfy, fit perfectly and last and last wash after wash.
Although we started out as predominately unisex, the very first season we launched we offered a floral and it went crazy! People were all about it, I guess there wasn't many other brands offering jersey florals. So each season now we bring out a new floral which has actually steered the brand away from such a unisex vibe. Also as Florin has grown up (she's now nearly 5) she has also become more and more opinionated in what she wants to wear (and all the mama's out there all agreed in unison) so our styles have become more gender focused..... dresses and skirts for the girls, and resort style shirts & shorts for the boys. We definitely still do a bunch of the unisex styles, but our colour palette and styling is a little more gender focused these days.
   
YOU HAVE A SMALL FAMILY. HOW HAVE YOU FOUND MANAGING YOUR TIME SINCE BECOMING A MUM AND GROWING THE BRAND? 
Hm, well I am definitely no expert at it, haha! Its been 5 years of trial and error (we actually launched the brand when I was 6 months pregnant) so the whole juggle of work and life and downtime has been something that as a family we've had to be really intentional about getting right. In the early days it looked a lot like working at night and trading in time for myself to get work done, while looking after small children during the day.....
Now that the girls (Florin 4, Luna 2) go to daycare a few days a week my work weeks are much more structured, which is working great! I genuinely love what I do, so despite the juggle I'm all in.....
 
YOU HAVE QUITE A FEW NEW ZEALAND STOCKISTS - HOW DO YOU FIND THE NZ MARKET COMPARED TO AUSTRALIA? 
We're relatively new to the NZ market. We have great agent who represent us in NZ, and our NZ customers seem to love the brand. It feels like our NZ customers have quite a similar style to what we do in Melbs so the brand fits in really well over there.
      
THE KIDS CLOTHING MARKET HAS GROWN SIGNIFICANTLY IN THE LAST 2 YEARS IN PARTICULAR; IN YOUR OPINION WHAT HAS CONTRIBUTED TO THAT? 
Yeah its boomed. 4 years ago when we started this, there wasn't half as much in the market as there is now. The kids market is always going to be in high demand, as people are always going to keep having kids. And I suppose as life keeps expanding, we're able to access more and more, its only natural that would have a knock on effect into the kids market. Technology has also played a huge part in expanding the market. Websites are easier to build, Instagram for promoting it, Hootsuite for social, Xero for accounting... There's basically a program for everything you need to start up a business now!
 
WHAT 3 TIPS WOULD YOU GIVE SMALL BRANDS IN AUSTRALIA ABOUT BEGINNING A START UP IN THE KIDS MARKET? 
1. Find your gap and fill it. Make your offering different to what's out there and people will come looking for it.
2. Be uniquely you... There's nothing more powerful that sticking to your own style / vibe.. Its what comes the most naturally and you'll flourish in it. People want to see the 'lifestyle' behind your brand and if its artificial people can see straight through that!
3. Identify your weaknesses and outsource them. I'd much rather have people doing the things I can't do, then me spending time, effort (& frustration) on trying to figure them out.
   
 
HOW HAVE YOU FOUND INSTAGRAM IN TERMS OF PROMOTING YOUR BRAND? 
Instagram is a great tool for businesses. It has a really amazing way of creating community amongst its followers and allows customers a direct contact point with brands. 
 
WHAT OTHER CATEGORIES DO YOU HOPE TO EXPAND INTO? 
Good question.... We get a lot of emails from our customers asking for grown up size tee's and clothing in our prints and plains. So thats an possibility in the future.. Watch this spot!