Her Strong Mother coffee cups and tees are becoming something of an Instagram hit. We meet the Welsh woman behind Mère Soeur, Carrie Anne Roberts – mum-of-one and purveyor of mum merchandise…
Carrie Anne, 25, lives in Wales with her one-year-old son River.
What time did you wake up this morning?
8.15 on the dot. I’m blessed with a snoozy child.
What woke you up?
River pulling at my PJs crying for boob then laughing and bouncing when he realised my eyes were open and I’d registered his request.
What do you tend to do upon first waking?
Breastfeed River. Every day. This can go on for some time, he likes to starfish on top of me, so I’ll have a scroll through my fave IG accounts, check emails, reply to messages, check orders, start to wonder how on earth I’m going to get out of bed etc.
Tea or coffee?
Always coffee! I occasionally become a tea obsesso and gulp cup after cup before rapidly going off it again for another few months.
What’s for breakfast?
I’m awful at feeding myself. I’m also awful at creative cooking and planning ahead so I tend to throw together a breakfast of fruit with natural yogurt and a bit of toast or savoury muffin for River then nurse my coffee until that all consuming empty feeling creeps up on me and I have to snaffle whatever’s in sight. We do love a black grape in this household though.
In three words, describe mornings in your house…
Performed with reluctance.
How might the rest of your day pan out?
The average day will be spent juggling play with work/cooking/tidying up. I don’t have childcare so I work when River naps and fit the rest into his awake time when possible (never). I go to bed with him at 7pm and get back to work until I crash. All of this makes for a very unhealthy work/life balance doesn’t it? Don’t try this at home.
What were you doing with your time before River came along?
I was at Lush, the best company I’ve ever worked for and a job I adored with wonderful people. When I wasn’t living and breathing ethical beauty I was being young and carefree with baby poppa. Long gone are the days of staining hotel walls while trying to open bottles of wine with a shoe, lazy breakfast dates and being out past 6pm. One day.
Tell us about Mère Soeur…
When – and why – did you start Mère Soeur; making merchandise for mums?
After experiencing the power of sisterhood during those first few lonely months as a new mum and really witnessing how much mutual support and encouragement can totally change your experience of motherhood I knew that I wanted to spread the message further and start creating products that I loved in the hope that they might resonate with other mamas. Who needs an excuse to buy mama-merch anyway?!
It’s growing fast and I’m incredibly lucky to be part of such a supportive online community. I have so many people to thank for keeping me busy and making my gambles worthwhile but there’s still so much to do.
What made you choose ‘soeur’ – do you have French roots?
None whatsoever! I really just love the language and how those words Mère Soeur sound when put together. It has backfired slightly and I’ve had a lot of trouble with the ‘è’ which is why I’m @mre.soeur on IG!
How do you find both running a business and raising a child?
It’s stressful and rewarding and tough and empowering. I wouldn’t have it any other way but running even a minuscule empire alongside raising a little human is not for the faint hearted. I have huge ups and crashing lows teamed with moments of self doubt (that’s just the motherhood part).