Let me tell you a story
Once upon a time there was a woman who had it all. A strong, loving husband, a wonderful home, a retro business and a beautiful daughter. One day she was sitting at home with her adorable 10 week old daughter sleeping on her chest when she received a phone call that shattered her world. Her husband had been shot. She had just that morning given him a kiss before he went to work and told him to come home early because she missed him too much. Just that morning he had cuddled his little girl for the last time. He died of his wounds, in the hospital that worked so hard to save him, that night. A part of her died with him. He was her one true love and he was gone.
The woman decided she would not give up on life, their daughter needed her now more than ever. She decided that no matter how difficult it may be she will set an example for her child that no matter what, you have to get up and live. She joined a mom and baby group in the hope to find support in raising her daughter. She met the most incredible women who, along with her own mother, helped her survive the worst yet best year of her life as she grieved her husband but watched her daughter grow. These women became her rock and in turn she decided she wanted to support and enable other women especially mothers.
Having to provide for herself she knew she had go back to work or else start a business that could support her and her family. Having had her own business, and with a renewed passion for helping others overcome adversity in life, she had an idea to start something that could support and empower women. She wanted to bring together women who wanted to build their own businesses in order to be a mom with flexibility and time. And so Oh my Baby was born, the collaboration store known that would become known as OMB.
She wanted to start a business that would enable her to make an income but would in turn enable other women to grow their own businesses and support each other. For months she had followed numerous local brands that made amazing items for moms, babies and children. Despite her grief, her fear, and her doubt she decided to take the leap off a cliff and build her aeroplane on the way down. She partnered with another incredible mom, from her original moms group, and they began spreading the word and contacting all the businesses they had both been following.
Knowing that life is short and unpredictable these two women opened the Oh my Baby collaboration store in Brooklyn Mall in Pretoria in April 2017 with a few local brands on board and a limited budget. They made it work and the response was incredible. Requests flooded in from other local brands wanting to join the collaboration and from customers wanting to find out more about the store. In October 2017 they moved to Menlyn Park. Currently they stock clothing, linen, baby blankets, decor, baby wraps, nursing accessories, designer and hand made toys as well as teepees, swings, bags and much more all from local businesses. They even stock prams and travel systems from local businesses that import.
OMB is still very new. They are still working on growing and creating awareness about the collaboration. Working with and learning and growing with fellow ‘mompreneurs’ is what OMB is all about. Creating a safe space for women and mothers is another aim that OMB has. OMB has a private breastfeeding space in store, a play area for little ones so that moms can have a moment to themselves to shop, and in store events whereby they can collaborate with women who can empower and teach moms and even dads about pregnancy, parenting and life.
The women behind Oh my Baby are Mondi Gale and Gillian. The brands collaborating in store, from all over South Africa, are Ami and Me, Annapatat, Baby Cait, Baby Pros, BluBelle, Bokaloli, Ciello Baby, Cotton Collective, Hansel and Gretel, Holly Molly, Hello Poppet, Houtkappers, La Fede, Label of Love, LittleME, Little Handmade, Little Willow, Lots of Love, Maddon & Cole, MiGi Designs, Meerkat Leather Designs, Mila Moo, Minimi Atelier, Mom and Bab, Nectar and Ink, Stylishi Mama, Tickled Baby, Tiger Lily, Twinkle Tots, Tris Alves Baby & Co and Tooky Toys. There are many more brands still to come.
Dreams can come true through the power of collaboration and community. Support the makers. Support the women and mothers in this country in building their businesses. Support the families who want something unique and proudly South African. Support the value of building something for the generations to come. Life is not easy. Let us get through it together.
We are OMB. We invite you to become a part of our story.