This week, I’d love to introduce you to Kate Heppell, one third of the creative team behind the boutique lifestyle brand, Kip & Co.
Kate began her career as an accountant and has put her number crunching skills to good use, building her first small business (an organic health food store, cafe and yoga studio – Sprout in Hawthorn) up from scratch at ripe old age of 25. Five years on and Kate set her sights on a new challenge – cracking the competitive Australian fashion industry. After Kate was a trusted adviser to cult fashion label Obus before deciding to join forces with sister Hayley and friend Alex in 2012 to launch Kip & Co. What started as a boutique bedding label and a passionate project for all three girls has quickly become a booming lifestyle brand and the focus of their energies.
With their passion and diverse skills, Kate and the girls are looking to further expand the Kip & Co range and introduce the brand into new markets. Kate is married to the love of her life and multi-talented landscaper, Mal, and have a fiery three year old, Zig.
This is a day in Kate’s life…
Kate Heppell, Kip & Co
Every day is very different for me as I literally hop between work and family but this was my day yesterday – a day very indicative of what my weekday life is like.
My husband and I naturally wake between 6-6.15 every morning like clockwork. He sets his alarm for 6.15 but we have usually started chatting before it goes off. Our son, Zig, doesn’t wake for an hour so I lie in bed chatting to my husband about the day, where he’ll be working (he is a landscaper) and check Instagram and my work emails. He leaves at about 6.45.
Zig wakes so I collect him for a bit of cuddle time in our big bed before we get the day on the way.
Just the usual chaotic getting-ready scenario with kids… a bit of breaky, clothes, cartoons, a sneaky call or email here and there but these 2 hours zoom by and next thing we are ready to walk out the door.
9.30am – 1.00pm
I try and do some kind of activity with Zig and one or two of his buddies every morning – and their mums of course (my girlfriends). Today we are going to Bounce in Glen Iris. I have never actually “bounced” before as he usually does the Minibounce with his friends but we are going alone today so I have decided to get involved. After Bounce we hit the rocket park in Hawthorn for some lunch with a friend before we head home for his snooze and I get stuck into some work.
Zig goes down so I have a two hour block to nail some emails. This is often my most productive two hours of the day when I can knuckle down in my home office and field emails relating to production, stock, negotiating the details of a future collaboration, and answering a few questions for another blog for our agent, MFPR…all sorts are coming in. I also slip a soup on the stove (it is a full chicken and vegie one that takes about 5 minutes to get on, but then simmers away for 45min). I do all sorts of things (mainly work though) until Zig wakes and my husband gets home at 3pm and I zoom out the door.
I have raced to the studio for a quick design meeting with Hayley and Alex. We handed a range in a week back and we need to nut out some of the finer details for 2 rugs we are planning. Our warehouse is in Abbotsford and we have a great studio within the warehouse that we all work out of, alongside our three employees Ana, Jess and Kaity. We have a blast when we all cross over.
Home in time to get dinner on the table at about 5.45pm
This time is usually all about Zig. I settle into a long bath with him (every single night – we love it!), bit of nudie time, PJ’s, a few books and then (against all advice) I lay down (and sometimes my husband also) with our son on our bed and he falls asleep there before I transfer him to his cot. We all just love this so much and figured it wouldn’t go on this long but… well it has. Crazy – we know!
These hours play out differently every night depending on how much work I have, but last night my husband and I watched Insight in bed (one of the best shows on TV), researched a few locations for our next shoot, and then read the last 50 pages of Gone Girl (I’ve loved this book) before dozzing off around 10pm. I am trying to do less work at night and more hubby time but last night the tables had turned and he was madly finishing a design for the garden of a hotel in Perth.