Tell us a little bit of your background.
We both come from corporate marketing and communications roles within large multinational organisations. After both having our first children (Lachlan & Annabel) within a month of one another, we were introduced through a local mother’s group. We not only shared the experience of being new mums together, but also discovered a mutual love of all things Scandinavian design related along the way. Not long after returning back to our corporate roles after maternity leave, norsu was born. It provides us with a creative outlet that we were unable to channel in our corporate jobs, while also allowing us to utilise the skills we had gained from 10+ years in those roles. Nat also has an IT degree under her belt which has really come in handy with the website management!
How you came to the idea to launch norsu?
After continuously obsessing over Scandi blogs and interior mags, one common theme emerged – the lack of access that Australian consumers had to purchase beautiful Scandinavian homewares. We were initially going to focus on selling art after an overwhelming amount of feedback received for a piece of Marimekko fabric that was on display in Lachlan’s nursery, but the business concept soon evolved once we realised we couldn’t stop at art!
How do you balance work and family life?
This is very tough at the moment. norsu is growing at a rapid rate, and it is proving difficult for the two of us to keep up with the demand. In addition to norsu, Kristy is only just stepping away from her corporate role at the end of this month, and Nat has recently had her second child, Harvey, which is a full-time job in itself. We tend to take norsu one day at a time, doing what we can, when we can, but always ensuring it doesn’t encroach too heavily on our quality family time. This often means a lot of late night work when our little ones are asleep, to enable us to spend time with them during the day.
What inspires you?
We draw inspiration from many forums, but at the moment, our favourite would have to be Instagram! We love getting to know people from all over the world, and the insights into their lives that Instagram allows us to experience. As we are dealing with designers on the other side of the world, it is not always easy to keep across their new products and collections via traditional means such as magazines or email. With Instagram, we are able to gather this information as quickly as others living in the same city as these designers, and are finding it to be extremely advantageous in keeping a finger on the pulse of emerging trends.
What is your advice to someone thinking about launching an (online) business but still in doubt?
Go for it! If you have a strong passion and a great idea, you really have nothing to lose other than your time. With the amazing software available these days, a website can be very inexpensive to set up, and extremely easy to manage. Keep things simple, and make sure you utilise other online forums such as social media to complement your core platform. Above all, back yourself, and make sure you have some fun along the way… Good luck! :)