How to sell bohemian handmade decor and furniture with Petria Field of Coco Rose Interiors – Side Hustle Sunday

Side Hustle Series

When is the last time you took a leap of faith to follow a dream?

Petria Field from Coco Rose Interiors is sharing her tips and more about her business today as part of our side hustle series this year. “I’m an experienced trade qualified florist but was frustrated by dictation from bosses closed off to innovative progression in the industry. We always had ideas to create a home-based business, that would allow me to exercise my creative flair and be at home with my children but it wasn’t until our time living in Indonesia last year
that inspiration and passion conquered fear.”

We at Coco Rose Interiors aim to inspire a more natural and minimalistic way for people to design their homes (and live their lives!). We source all natural, handmade products and also like to demonstrate how to style and incorporate natural elements into your everyday living.

You can find the Coco Rose website here, or follow them on Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest for gorgeous inspiration, tips or to shop.

Check out the interview with Petria Field below.

What do you do?

We source all natural, high quality handmade bohemian furniture and decor and demonstrate a more natural and minimalistic way for people to design their homes.

How much do you make?

Currently, we have just finished our startup phase after having our first container of stock arrive two months ago. We are making regular sales and have begun moving into a heavily focussed marketing and business development phase build our customer base. We were recently awarded a $3000 small business grant for a 3 month business coaching program and have set our target to reach $100 000 in sales per year.

How and why did you get into it?

We moved our family to Indonesia in 2016 for a year and whilst living there were inspired by the relaxed island lifestyle we were living. I have always had a real passion for styling rooms with on trend pieces, so I wanted to design a business that captured these experiences and bring it to Australia. As you can see, We offer a luxe tropical bohemian range, that creates a calming natural feel to the home.

What did you need to start?

We built and branded our business from scratch, so in short, we needed everything! To launch our business we had our logo designed and applied branding to Custom printed business cards and packaging. We had our website designed with an online store and blog, with features such as Afterpay, PayPal, shop Instagram and automated delivery tracking systems.

We designed and had our first container of products made, fumigated, shipped and cleared through customs. We styled our home with our products and had two professional photoshoots. We’ve attended networking events and sought financial, marketing and business development advice along the way.

All in all, our startup is currently sitting at $30,000.

What are the best ways you have marketed and promoted your side hustle?

We are taking our marketing very seriously and actively working on increasing our SEO and web presence with our business coach at present. We write a regular blog on our website and have featured in numerous blogs and articles on other like-minded sites which is helping expand our reach.

We also collaborate with lots of other businesses that complement our vision. Coco Rose Interiors styles the products together and uses a professional photographer to shoot and edit. In return for products to include in our rooms, we give each collaborator access to the edited photos to share on their Instagram and Facebook feeds, which in turn increases our market reach.

What are the pros of what you do?

Financially, we are a home based business so we have no physical premise overheads such as lease agreements, fit out expenses or shopfront advertising. We love that we are building our business in a very positive, collaborative environment. The online small business world is amazingly supportive and always willing to help you build your business. We are passionate about the business we are building and are very confident in the products and service we offer.

What are the cons of what you do?

Conducting an import business, we have had to outlay a lot of capital for stock in comparison to other online businesses that are able to make their products as each order comes in. We also have no physical storefront traffic visiting us with the ability to touch and feel the luxe textures and handmade quality of our products, so we have to invest a lot of time into marketing to build our online customer base and brand reputation.

What do you wish you had done differently?

Overall we are very happy with how our business is progressing. If we had our time over we would’ve selected a different supplier for our rattan furniture. Initially, we were told our items would take four weeks to make but ended up being heavily delayed, taking three months! This meant we could not ship all of our decor items we had purchased without the rattan items as the furniture makes it viable to ship a full container. It made for an extremely stressful period as our capital was tied up for 3 months with no sales returning. Luckily, we have found a more competitive supplier that can meet our time requirements at the same level of quality.

What tips would you give others?

Even though you are a small business, it’s no small task starting one. Write a clear business plan, regardless whether you plan to borrow money or not. It will help you map out a clear structure for how your business should look, what your target market is and what direction you want to take it. You’ll even understand clearly what your strengths and weaknesses are. Don’t be afraid to outsource parts of your business you know you don’t have expertise in. You will never be able to do everything and this is a good way to ensure your focus remains on your skill set and gives you every chance of success.

Anything else you would like to add?

We live by the quote ‘If you do small things with great love, than amazing opportunities happen’!

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