Nicola Eyre – mum-of-four and founder of Cissy Wears kids’ concept store – talks mornings, setting up shop, dividing house duties with her husband and lasting two months as a stay-at-home mum…
Nicola Eyre, founder of kids’ clothing label Cissy Wears, lives with her husband Jim and their kids: Felix, nine, Cissy, six, Cassius, two, and Nico, two and a half months, in south east London
What’s your home like?
A typical London Victorian terrace. Inside it’s pretty minimalist and modern.
What time are you up in the morning?
Between 5.30 and 7.30am depending on if I’m being lazy or not…!
What (or who) wakes you up?
Either my youngest boy will wake me with a shout for the iPad or the random desire for a seahorse, or the baby will rouse me – she’s a happy waker – she’ll kick about and coo in her cot until I wake up.
How do you feel?
I’m a morning person so I’m pretty much up-and-at-em. Although sometimes I pretend to be asleep and carry on napping because I love naps!
What do you do first thing?
Reach for my phone and make sure the empire hasn’t suffered some sort of disaster overnight…
What’s for breakfast?
Hot water with lemon, granola and fruit, or maybe a bagel with peanut butter and banana.
Describe mornings in your house in three words…
Chaos, pandemonium, busy.
How might the rest of your day pan out?
Drop the kids at school then straight to the office.
Where are the kids, when you’re working?
At school or with the childminder. Baby Nico stays with me at the office the whole time as she is exclusively breastfed. It’s the summer holidays now so Felix is at cricket camp and Cissy is at theatre school doing a production of Alice in Wonderland.
When did you set up Cissy Wears and what was your motivation?
In 2012, I left my previous employer and just missed out on a job with a big online children’s retailer so I decided to go for it myself instead.
What experience did you have before setting up shop?
I had part time jobs in shops from when I was 13 until I left university and, since then, over a decade of marketing experience.
In business, what do you enjoy and what’s challenging – and do you delegate the latter?
I love the buying process, travelling and discovering new brands but I’m not very good at delegating! I also find customer service a challenge sometimes but I have a good support network of friends to vent to. Although I love social media, I find it awkward when people sometimes recognise me and probably come across as aloof but actually I’m really embarrassed!
Did you ever consider staying at home with the kids full time?
I tried it once and lasted less than two months before I realised I was turning into the worst mother of all time. I need my space, freedom and something to occupy my mind.
Does your partner split housework/childcare duties with you?
Yes, and if anything he probably does more than I do at the same time as holding down an incredibly stressful advertising agency job.
What’s an ideal weekend?
Saturdays are usually all about running the children here and there for various sports commitments, but Sundays are our family day where we enjoy some much needed time together.
Is there a part of your life that is compromised by having four kids and running a business – for instance, time with friends or time to yourself?
Quality time with my husband.
If you could wake up anywhere tomorrow, where would it be?
A nice relaxing holiday somewhere warm and secluded, happy in the knowledge that everything else is being taken care of.