We’ve coveted the deliciousness of Florrie & Max frillies for a long time now and we love the fab unisex tees and leggings too – so were delighted when founder Claire took time to tell us all about the business she now runs full time after being made redundant whilst pregnant (if you didn’t say ‘up yours!’ to your former employers Claire, we are saying it for you!)
SM: How did Florrie & Max come about?
Claire: Florrie & Max started life in July 2013 under its former name of Itsy Bits Children’s Boutique. I was on maternity leave from my job as an accountant at the time and, after scouring the high street and the internet, I spotted a gap in the market for affordable, brightly coloured frilly pants to cover nappies. The business started on a bit of a whim (probably not advisable!) with a wholesale order of 100 pairs of ‘frillies’ which sold out within 4 days of me launching the website. Since then we have expanded into tutus, tights and our collaboration with The Princess & The Frock.
SM: And which items does Elsa like best?
Claire: Elsa loves the new range of handmade dresses which will be launching at the end of February. She always enjoys it when we work with Claire from The Princess & The Frock as I let her look into new fabrics with me. Even at just 3 years old she likes to be involved! Also despite not being a girly girl she does love a tutu!
SM: What are the biggest challenges, running the business?
Claire: I now run Florrie & Max ‘full time’ after being made redundant whilst pregnant with 10 month Ted. So time is probably the biggest challenge at the moment. My ‘to do’ list is ever growing and my plans to grow Florrie & Max often suffer because I don’t have the time to invest. However, I wouldn’t change anything; despite working until the early hours several times a week I get to spend all day with my children.
SM: And your proudest moment…?
Claire: That’s really quite tricky as I am proud of so much I have achieved in the last two and a half years. I think what’s made me proudest is that I have managed to take a whim of an idea and turn it into my full time job. Hopefully we will continue to grow and grow and I will be able to continue to be with my children through the day and spend the evenings working on Florrie & Max.
SM: Where did the name come from?
Claire: After launching as Itsy Bits Children’s Boutique in 2013 I was never entirely happy with the name. It wasn’t really me and was something I pondered changing several times. After having Ted in April 2015 I decided that it was time to make the change and Florrie & Max was born. Named after my very own Elsa Florence and Ted Maxwell.
SM: What made you decide to offer free postage on all items?
Claire: As a regular internet shopper there is nothing more frustrating that having to search a website top to bottom to find out how much the shipping charge is going to be. I have abandoned many a shopping cart due to extortionate shipping charges at checkout. So I felt quite strongly that the price you see is the price you will pay, no sneaky extras, no shocks when you come to payment.
SM: What’s next for the business?
Claire: We have the Spring collaboration with The Princess & The Frock launching at the end of February which is very exciting. Despite not being able to sew a stitch this collaboration allows me to be creative as I select all the fabrics and work on styles and designs with an expert in The Princess & The Frock.
I am also in talks about stocking a few other small, independent brands and I am always looking to develop unisex and boys ranges to counter the ‘girliness’ of all the frills!
Shop online at Florrie and Max