Brand Spotlight: Farmyard the Labels' Emma Hales
Posted on February 26 2020
Meet Emma Hales. Mum to Beatrix, fellow Meath woman, and owner of Farmyard the Label and co-owner (along with the fabulous Sam of Goose & Gander) of Folk & Nest. Emma also won the Gold Junior Design Award in 2019 for Farmyard the Label. She's some woman for one woman, and she generously agreed to take part in our Brand Spotlight series.
Tell us about your brand
My name is Emma Hales, and I am the Owner and Designer of Farmyard the Label. I officially launched the brand in September 2018.
What inspired you to start your own brand?
I studied Fashion and textiles in college (NCAD) with a constant focus on Childrenswear. I have always had a real love for it, and have worked in Childrenswear throughout my career, with my most recent employers being Burberry and JoJo Maman Bebe.
When I went on maternity leave in 2017 I had the idea of starting my own brand for Children which focused on simplicity, sustainability and timeless fashion. The idea that each item would be worn, loved, and passed down.
As a mum and small business owner, how do you balance work life and home life?
My daughter is now a toddler, so she is VERY active! My husband works very hard and so I have Beatrix a lot of the time. We have just recently put her into Nursery two days a week, which she absolutely loves! This gives me time to work on the business. I also do a lot of work when she goes to bed. I guess it never really stops when you have your own business, but I couldn't do it if she was with me every day, it wouldn't be fair to her.
I am lucky I have had over ten years in the fashion industry, and have a good relationship with many factories across the globe. Having a good knowledge of the supply chain process definitely made it easier when starting the brand.
What are the highs and lows of working for yourself?
I absolutely love that I am free to design with my heart, a collection that I 100% believe in. I have always known I would do this one day and so it feels really rewarding having the brand now and that the risk has paid off. I am constantly grateful to my customers and followers of the brand.
There are some part to running a business on your own which are hard. Everything I do, as much as I love it, is always a risk, and when it is your own money it's scary! I am also accountable for every single aspect in the business, I no longer have an accounts team or logistic team to call when something goes wrong! I need to fix the problems, and sometimes that can be tedious! But on a whole, I love what I do and what I have created. I am full of ideas for the future.
Tell us what's next for your brand
We have had a huge amount going on at home, we have moved house and country so our SS20 collection will be smaller than last year, However this week I am bringing back our leggings in new colours, these are a firm favourite with our customers. There are also lots of other items coming in and some carry forward from last season which were popular. I am in the middle of moving factory so I am currently designing and sampling with them for AW20.
Separately to Farmyard I am also launching a new brand with Sam from Goose and Gander this month called FOLK + NEST. It is a beautiful Card and Print Brand, all printed here in Ireland. We can't wait to launch, I think you will love it, there's something for everyone!