A Bromley mum was so heartbroken at not with the ability to purchase cards consultant of her black youngsters that she started making her own – and turned it into an award-successful business.
Colour Celebrations was created by Deborah Ajaja, 34, in 2018 after she recognised the lack of variety in child merchandise after giving beginning to a son in 2017.
Deborah’s Black and Mixed Edition milestone cards led Colour Celebrations to win Editor’s Choice within the 2021 Made for Mums awards within the new-born reward class.
Deborah stated: “That was an enormous second for Colour Celebrations. I nonetheless can’t fairly consider we gained it. I’m nonetheless wrapping my head round it.”
The business proprietor created Colour Celebrations to create child and toddler merchandise which had been extra consultant of Black and Mixed Heritage youngsters.
“As many new mums do, you are actually eager to share photos of your child and share how they’re progressing and I used to be no completely different,” Deborah stated.
“One of the instruments I used to make use of fairly religiously was milestone cards however I shortly realised that they weren’t consultant of my youngster’s hue.
“[For my] little Black child boy, [the milestone cards] didn’t seem like him.”
Not solely did Deborah recognise the characters on the milestone cards weren’t consultant of her son, however she additionally acknowledged how the cards weren’t reflective of the cultural milestones her household would have fun.
She stated: “There was one card that made me really feel fairly conflicted as a result of it was of a good-skinned, blonde, blue-eyed caricature and, while I used to be over the moon to have fun a milestone with my son, it [was] such a conflicting card.
“Initially, it was coronary heart-breaking. That disappointment and damage was instantly spun right into a drive and hearth ball of ardour to do one thing about it.”
And so, Deborah took motion and started her own line of milestone cards that represented not simply youngsters of Black and Mixed heritage but in addition a range of cultural celebrations.
Milestone cards are small cards for mother and father to make use of in photos to doc their youngsters’s development, from their first smile to their first birthday.
Made for Mums stated the Colour Celebrations milestone cards had been awarded as a result of: “These cute milestone cards are created particularly for black and combined-ethnicity babies, with creator Deborah Ajaja recognizing a spot available in the market for a product like this that options extra various imagery.”
One explicit card marks the naming ceremony which takes place in Nigerian cultures, the place the title of the brand new-born is formally introduced to buddies and household.
Another milestone card marks the infant dedication that takes place throughout the Christian religion.
She stated: “I didn’t see something like that [being] represented.”
The business has since expanded from milestone cards to peak charts and sustainable clothes, which has acquired a rapturous response from clients.
The peak chart and toddler t-shirts had been so standard they offered out inside 24 hours.
She stated: “The [customers] actually like it, as a result of of how important it’s, as a result of it permits mother and father to really feel seen.
“It was phenomenal, the frequent response I acquired again was: ‘we didn’t know we would have liked this.’”
The business not solely seeks to supply merchandise for households however a “protected area” for mother and father.
Last 12 months, Deborah launched the ‘Colourful Motherhood’ marketing campaign to have fun and focus on the Black and Mixed Heritage experiences of motherhood.
She stated: “[Colour Celebrations] is a hub, it’s a neighborhood the place we’re growing dialogue factors [while] celebrating the frequent denominator that everyone loves, which is youngsters and loving these cute babies as they develop.
“It’s gone past responses to the product [and expanded to] responses to communities and how folks perceive subjects like race, ethnicity and variety.”
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Deborah was additionally a finalist within the Consumer and Luxury Category at the 2019 Black British business awards.
“Every single time somebody sends me an image that fills me with so a lot pleasure,” Deborah stated.
“It’s about illustration and figuring out I’m a component of households’ journeys documenting their youngsters as they develop, and serving to them to create recollections.
“That’s actually the raison d’être of Colour Celebrations.”