I was living and working in New York City when my husband and I found out that we were expecting our first daughter, Anais (pronounced UH-nay). As with many first-time mums, I was absolutely unprepared for the journey I was about to embark on.
After Anais’s birth, I searched high and low across the United States for the muslin swaddling blankets that were a staple of my Australian childhood. Aussie mums—my mother and grandmother included—had swaddled with cotton muslin for centuries and I had intended to continue with the tradition. With no luck to be had, I rolled up my sleeves and got to work creating the first cotton muslin swaddling blankets available in the U.S. In 2006, the aden + anais™ brand was officially born.
Named after my daughter, Anais, and my ex-business partner’s son, Aden, the brand took off quicker than I could have ever imagined. Our first store in NYC gave me our first indication that we had hit something big. Within a few days of taking on stock of the swaddling blankets, Felina from The Upper Breast Side had sold out completely and called me to say, “Hold on to your hat—you are in for a wild ride with these blankets.”
I have always been a big fan of a quote by John Burroughs, “Leap and the net will appear.” This was especially true during the inception of aden + anais™ when I was selling swaddles from the boot (trunk) of a taxi in New York City. For the first three years of aden + anais™’ existence, I continued to work my full-time job at The Economist, while raising my family and running aden + anais™ from my kitchen table until the wee hours of the morning.
“Starting aden + anais was a true labor of love. Sleep took a backseat to running the company and raising my family.”
Starting aden + anais™ was a true labor of love. Sleep took a backseat to running the company and raising my family. A typical day consisted of getting up at 6:30am with my daughters, heading to work at The Economist around 9am and returning home from work for family time between the hours of 6pm and 8:30pm. From about that point until 3-4am every day I would spend time building aden + anais™.
aden + anais™ then relocated from my kitchen table in our Upper West Side apartment to our headquarters in the Brooklyn neighborhood of DUMBO. I fell in love with the beauty of the Brooklyn waterfront and chose to raise my daughters in the very same neighborhood. As a mother, I loved the convenience of working just a few blocks from home. When I am in the office, my family is never too far away.
I am excited about the future of aden + anais and I know that the brand will continue to revolutionize the baby industry with its innovative products, its authentic brand and a team of people who care very much about every single customer we have. To say it has been a whirlwind of an adventure thus far would be an understatement. I am excited to share this journey with you as aden + anais™ continues to grow.