Expectant mothers prepare and bond with their babies in different ways; some create beautiful nurseries, some knit booties or sing to their bellies. I collected books and colourful clothing, curating a collection based on love and hope for the future.
I always wondered if my children would find joy in reading, much like I did as a child. Now that they've been earth side for a few years I've discovered that they do love reading and it makes my heart sing from the inside out.
Shortly after the birth of my first son I developed post natal depression, this prompted us to move from Sydney back to Brisbane. I wanted to feel the sunshine, because I was sure if I could then everything would be okay.
I knew that I had trouble bonding with my baby, I loved him, I cared for him, I held him for every sleep, I read to him, I rocked him. When would the overwhelming love hit me? When would I shout from the rooftop that motherhood was the best thing that's ever happened to me? I began to think there was something very wrong with me.
During this time I tried really hard to build a bond with my son, I never wanted him to feel the disconnect. I made lots of eye contact, wore him in carriers and wraps, breastfed him, co-slept. One of my favourite things to do was to buy clothes for him, to source him the brightest and most colourful clothing I could find.
The fun clothing added colour to my dark days, they made me smile. I enjoyed dressing him, choosing an outfit that would match the weather and I loved the conversations the clothes would start with other parents.
The idea to start my own Scandi store happened when my eldest son was a few months old, it was merely an idea, a fantasy. It wasn't until almost two years later that I was encouraged and nurtured into opening my own store by friends and family. It took an incredible amount of encouragement!
I was pregnant with number two at the time, but I was keen and quickly got to work. I stayed up late and worked through toddler naps, I think it took almost 5 months before I could open to the public. My passion never wavered, I didn't care if people couldn't see the vision, or if they didn't like the clothes. I knew my tribe was out there, I just had to find them.
It didn't take long to connect with other parents who loved colourful clothing just as much as I did. In a world that seems to really love beige, neutrals and monochrome, it's refreshing to know there are other people just like me. People who believe that childhood should be expressive, with no pressure to conform. My heart would explode every time I was sent a photo of their child dressed in Scandi or when someone left a review.
The joy was spreading!
Scandiland grew incredibly quickly and we needed to move to accommodate all of the gorgeous clothes! It was at this time my partner commenced a new job that required working a 24/7 roster. Life was about to become very hectic, much more than either of us was really prepared for. The stress was mounting, my shoulders getting heavier.
Whilst I had recovered from my PND by the time my eldest son was 12 months old, I felt something creeping back earlier this year. I pushed past it as we so often do and got on with life. Unfortunately over the last few months my mental health went into a decline. Whilst I have great medical support I accepted the fact that I needed to reduce stress.
This led me to the heartbreaking decision to close Scandiland. It has been a really fun journey, I've met and worked with some of the most incredible women who inspire me everyday.
Thank you for letting me dress your kids (and you) in colour!
Please read more about our closure here