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26 Sep 2017

Featured Member – Jane Hawkes

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‘Why did you start a business, Jane?’ some of you have asked ….. so I thought I would share with you the journey that took me to launch Seashore No.4.

Life is always unpredictable and rightly so, if it was predictable it would be boring – don’t you agree?

When you share your life with someone with Autism, it becomes even more unpredictable, you are often never sure what will be around the corner.

Our beautiful, funny, loving and inspirational son was diagnosed with Autism at the age of 6, now in his teens he is a polite, well-mannered young man with a good sense of humour. It was him who inspired me to start an enterprise that would make our future a little more predictable by having a business that could offer employment to our son in the future.

For many reasons, an online business seemed the way forward and so started the learning curve. I had worked in business for 18 years, but never an e-commerce enterprise. I engaged with lots of people to help me on this journey including training on developing an online brand, Facebook marketing, employing individuals on the Autistic Spectrum and of course web design & marketing and SEO.

Part of the fun of learning is making mistakes, and sure there were lots of those along the way! But the fun part is learning and growing and we have certainly done that.

Our beautiful Seashore No.4 theme came about from inspiration taken from days out by the sea and our love of coastal living and our slogan ‘Beautiful Things Inspired by The Sea and The Shore’ ensured that both the sea and the shore were considered. Whilst sourcing products to sell I met some amazingly talented artisans for whom I was delighted to showcase their products.

Seashore No4, I imagined as a Beach Hut address, the number 4 not only conveniently rhyming with the word Seashore, but brought back memories of a trip to the coast one winter when our children were young. We had stopped at a café for Hot Chocolate and the table numbers were rustically painted onto pebbles. Unbeknown to anyone, our son being only 5 at the time, had taken the pebble and put it in his pocket! Yes, you’ve guessed it, it was a No.4! We only discovered it when it was too late to return the said pebble and have laughed about it ever since!

Now, in the present day, we feel happy in the knowledge that our son is reassured that he has a means of employment should he wish to take up the reins when he leaves school meaning that life is a little bit less unpredictable and that we do know what is around the corner – for now at least!

Jane – Seashore No.4

www.seashoreno4.co.uk

 

 

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