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Golden Talks: Our Founder's Heart-to-Heart with Claya, talking all things life and business this IWD

Our founder, Amy, had the privilege of speaking with the incredibly talented Becca, the visionary founder behind the inspiring brand, Claya, to share her business journey and everything in between this International...


Tell us a bit about Amy and Golden Child:  A few short sentences - how GC came to fruition, Age, where you reside (state), The little people in your life that inspire your designs  

In a nutshell, I’m an ex-corporate marketing girly in her early thirties who had an idea to start a children’s label during a pandemic without a great deal of knowledge or experience. I did a design / marketing degree at university, which certainly helped from a creative perspective but other than that, I had no idea how to run a business or where to start. 

My journey with Golden Child started when I became an aunty for the first time. I spent hours scrolling through website after website trying to find products to gift my sister and friends having children at the same time, but I struggled to tread water in a sea of sameness. If I did find products I loved, it was across multiple websites which I found frustrating. (I love the Claya model so much for this reason - you make it easy and fun).   

I’m endlessly inspired by the imaginations of my own golden children, my niece, and my nephews, and my 90s childhood, I started to craft my very first designs primarily for swaddles and from there Golden Child was born and I went onto launch my collection with twenty lines.  

As a new parent, cool aunty, rad uncle, or friend without children, this category can be hard to navigate, so I wanted to create a space without noise that offered quality baby essentials with personality a guided online experience that made something traditionally daunting more fun and easier.  

You’re probably thinking, she doesn’t have children, what would she know? And I totally get that, and you know what, I will never truly know until I become a mum, but I do have the most amazing sisters and group of friends that have helped me craft these products, test them, offer feedback and ideas, which has helped my process so much.  

Now they are older, my range has grown with them, which is why I’ve introduced new categories, and my brand has evolved over the last two years.   

With Golden Child, I want to instil creativity and exploration in children of all ages with fun, safe and sustainable items that are made to be lived in and loved. To this day I remember my most beloved threads and the feeling of pride and confidence they gave me, and ultimately, I want to gift that feeling to the next generation of little ones.  


How do you balance career, personal life and passions? Is there such a thing as balance? 

Honestly, I don’t. I’m still in the early stages of my business, so that consumes my life and I’m ok with that. I think we can all agree juggling work, personal life, and passions is a challenge – like trying to keep all the plates spinning at once. I don't think there's a perfect balance, but I try to prioritise what's most important at the time and put my energy there. It's not always smooth sailing, but it helps me handle the different aspects of life without feeling like I’m drowning. I am trying to make a more active effort to disconnect when I need to and spend a little more time doing things I love because I have learnt over the last year that life is too short, and you need to make the most of your time here That email can wait, sometimes I feel the expectations we put on ourselves as women and business owners to do it all are generally our own and not what others are expecting of us. So, take a breath, it can wait.   


What advice would you give to the next generation of female entrepreneurs? 

My biggest learning and piece of advice would be that you are not for everyone and that’s ok. Not everyone is going to love your brand like you do and that’s cool. Move on and find others that do, they are out there. It’s taken me a long time to realise and be comfortable with that, and I really wish I’d heard that earlier in life, but hindsight is a wonderful thing.  

Outside of that, I would say;  

  • Be kind, always. You never know what people are going through and it is a small world, especially in business.  
  • Be the squeaky wheel. I’m not a natural hustler but I've had to learn how to make things happen for myself and not expect opportunities to come to me because the world doesn’t work like that, unfortunately.  
  • Absorb. I’ve learnt more from reading other entrepreneurs' stories like Jodie Fox or Erin Deering, listening to female founder podcasts like female founder world, female start up club  the lazy CEO , and online courses than anything else. Use that knowledge and skills learnt to do as much as you can yourself within the business for the first few years because no one knows or cares as much about your brand as you do.   


Now Claya has moved into Children’s Apparel we are loving your newest collection “This Must Be The Place” Tell us a bit about it and the hurdles you overcame to produce such an amazing collection?  

This question is a doozy, I love it! Ahh, there were so many!  

I was diagnosed with cervical cancer midway through designing this collection, so in all honesty all the wheels fell off for a while. Going through major surgeries and an emergency egg retrieval all came quite quickly, not to mention dealing with the grief of the diagnosis and learning  you won’t be able to carry your own child was a lot. I coped by throwing myself into my work but I was drowning. As women, we often just soldier on without asking for help. I have an incredible partner and support system, but I didn't really reach out when I needed it. I'm sharing this because I want other women to know it's okay to ask for help; you're not alone. There are loads of support avenues, and now that I've come out on the other side, I want to share my experience so that I can help others facing similar hurdles and perhaps make them feel less alone.  

Add to that a new category! It’s fun and all, but it also means new suppliers and processes, which is a challenge within itself but finding a factory that could produce quality children's apparel was tough. We sampled for nearly six months before we found our chosen factory and even now there are learnings I’ve had for our first drop. Outside of that, I would say I had an inner hurdle of self-doubt where I was questioning myself too much around would anyone like it? are the colours right? will the collection sell? which led to a lot of wasted time. I’ve learnt to trust and believe in what I’m doing more, and just get it done. It will never be perfect and there will always be learnings, but it is better out in the world than not.  


Which Claya Curated Box would you gift and who too? (yourself Maybe, because you deserve it ;-) )  

This one is tough because they are all so beautiful, but I would choose the Modern Mermaid and share it between my two sisters. The BEST mums, partners, friends and sisters!  


Who is your Inspiration in business or personally and how do they drive you to do what you do?  

I have two.  

My niece is the main reason I do what I do, and I’m endlessly inspired by her curious mind, love of fashion and her caring nature. She is my BFF, and mini muse.   

My partner. He is my biggest supporter, my voice of reason, and my unofficial therapist. Being a business owner himself, he inspires me every day to take risks, say yes, and I couldn’t do it without him.  


What do you like to do for Fun? 

Can I say work? Haha, joke.  I love being outdoors! My partner and I do a lot of walking around Sydney and love to explore the area. I love to read, reformer Pilates when I can fit it in, traveling, seeing bands, catching up with friends, and spending time with my niece and nephews.   


What Product or Brand would you like to see join the Claya Brand Family next? 

I am obsessed with Gentle Habits.  

From product to packaging and experience, I’m so inspired by the brand and how their products make me feel that I'd love other to experience it too. You both have a similar aesthetic too, so I could see their products fitting seamlessly into so many of your beautiful, curated boxes.  


You have had such a phenomenal year of growth, if we can be cheeky enough to ask… What’s next for Golden Child? 

 Ah, I’m gushing. That is so sweet, thank you. My impostor syndrome kicks in whenever I receive a complement like that, so I’m trying to sit with compliments like that and be ok with feeling proud of what I’ve achieved (at least for a minute or so 😊).  

I don’t want to give too much away but we will be focused on expanding our retail partnerships both locally and abroad in locations like Japan and the US, which is a dream come true and an area I am truly passionate about. I adore my stockist’s and my world wouldn’t be what it is without them.  

From a brand perspective I'd say one word to describe what’s to come and that’s MORE.  

More sizes, more colour, more collaborations with like-minded brands, more frequent collection drops, more from me as a founder, and even a few new categories.  

I can't thank Becca from Claya enough for the opportunity and space to share my story. Check out Claya's stunning range of curated gift boxes here. 


Amy xx 

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