Nicola Eyre is your local south-east London enabler of the refined spendy spendy spending of your maternity leave pounds. She runs Cissy Wears, a chic emporium of monochrome and similarly cool baby goods in Hither Green, and of course online where her tempting wares can get to you in your bed, on the loo and any other time your kids leave you alone for one second. Cissy Wears stocks all your hip baby must-haves like Hello Yellow cushions, Ferm Living decor, Mini Rodini and Bobo Choses clothes and LuckyBoySunday toys. Another great thing about the store is that it’s right by The Cafe of Good Hope run by the Jimmy Mizen foundation, so you can have a little spendy spend and then a slice of chocolate cake while supporting young local people learning the ropes of the hospitality trade.
Who are you and who makes up your family?
Myself and my husband Jim, and our three kids Felix, Cissy and Cassius.
What is your creative project/business?
I own kids concept design store Cissy Wears.
How and when did you come to start it?
I started it in 2012. I left the music industry after the birth of Cissy – it’s not a kind business to mothers 🙁 I think I was probably just about one of the first women who weren’t fired for getting pregnant. I stuck it out for as long as I could but when I was on maternity leave a lot of my friends were made redundant and I simply couldn’t face going back. I got a new job – a bit more 9-5 – and I HATED it. I missed the creative environment. I’m not good with red tape and structure and reports. I went for a position at a large children’s independent retailer and didn’t get the job. I was hooked then. How could I consider doing anything else – children’s fashion was my new passion, and the only thing that excited me as much as music. I remember they asked me what I would do if I didn’t get the job, and I said I would start up on my own. I seem to remember they kinda smirked to themselves and then I just knew I had to go for it. I had – and still have – no idea what I’m really doing. I’m just winging it!
What does it mean to you and how it makes you feel?
It’s a love-hate relationship.
What is the hardest part about it?
It’s how your friends and family don’t take it seriously. They don’t think you have a real job. They say stuff like “oh I’d love to work for myself – go in when I want, bum around all day, go shopping for a living”. If you have no childcare for example, people can be so dismissive , clearly you can just take time off or shut the shop. People who are paid by another company think their job is more worthy than mine.
Finally, what or who is your inspo?
I get inspired by all sorts of things; the people around me, the creative feeds I see on Instagram. When I see something great, I try to take that idea and apply WHY I like it and make it fit my business, rather than just copying it straight up. I try not to look at other shops in my field, I spent far too much time worrying about being ripped off so now I try not to notice it and then I can’t worry. I’m just happy doing my own thing 🙂