A mum’s baby and toddler event whilst on maternity leave has now developed into a series of quirky and stylish family festivals.
After Helen Kerray, of Walton-le-Dale, had her first child, she realised she had a lot of baby items and didn’t want to throw them away.
Whilst they were reused with her second child, she found common ground with other parents and she set up BabyLoved Family as a service to collect, recycle and reuse baby clothes, toys and accessories.
As she began to host events with independent firms across the North West, her events business grew.
Her next pop up BabyLoved Family FunHouse festival takes place at the People’s Production Lab in Cannon Street, Preston, on Saturday, April 27, from 11am until 3.30pm.
The 36-year-old, who is also a physical education teacher and consultant, says: “After having my first child, I realised how many items he needed, how expensive things are and I had to be a bit more savvy about reusing quality items.
It is great to work with other creative women who contribute to the events. I have met some really amazing womenHelen Kerray
“I love dressing my boys in gorgeous clothing but it made sense to sell on the good quality but no longer needed items through a quality event with like minded parents.
“This saves items from being wasted after they have only been used for such a short period of time.”
“So with a friend, I set up BabyLoved Family that allowed people to recycle baby and toddler items and bring together smaller businesses in the community that specialise in children’s clothes, toys and accessories. I’m also a big fan of shopping locally, and realise the benefits of having lots of small local businesses all doing well together.
“I then started including services, like local groups and activities for children and invited them to the events, and then it all just spiralled. The enjoyment factor meant that even more people were wanting to attend. It’s a massive group effort from all the invested businesses and attendees.
“I invited local independent brands to sell their items and each time, I get more businesses involved and it goes up another level.
“I have relocated from village halls, to bigger venues, like People’s Production Lab, which allows me to bring in different activity providers. It has now become more of a family festival of activities, workshops, an indie brands marketplace, perfect preloved marketplace and a family food court.
“This is why the name has evolved from BabyLoved to BabyLoved Family. It now encompasses ages up to 11, plus the parents.”
Helen works closely with other businesses and enterprises, including Coffee Work Sleep Creatives and she co-hosts child friendly networking meet-ups for mums in business as a joint collaboration with CWS Creatives.
She says: “It is great to work with other creative women who contribute to the events. I have met some amazing women.”
People also bring in good quality items, such as clothes, toiletries and household products, to be donated to women’s refuges in Lancashire.
She says: “I like the fact I am able to give something back to women and families who need it.”
Families are invited to attend Helen’s next event on April 27, which caters for all, from babies and toddlers, to children and parents.
The BabyLoved Family activity partner, Toddler Sense will be putting on a variety of themed activities. There will also be family yoga, slime making workshop, craft workshops, hypnobirthing demonstrations, a book swap and mama pamper treatments, as well as a bar with Proseccos, beers and children’s mocktails.
Attendees can bring along their no longer needed items to the event, to be delivered to women’s refuges.
Tickets are £6.98 but BabyLoved Family is offering readers a discount using the code LEP via www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/59017520994