On the launch of my new company, I thought I would also share my journey.
Tell us your story and what inspired you to set up your company?
In between working at Conde Nast and Design Centre I got married, after our wedding a few people asked me to help plan theirs so I started wedding planning for three years. I loved it and worked on some wonderful projects, the hours were long which was a juggle with two very young daughters, so when my old boss from Conde Nast moved to run the newly acquired Design Centre and offered me a job I took it, thinking I would stay a year and then go back to my weddings. I ended up spending 16 very happy years there, the transformation of the Design Centre within that time was remarkable, so being part of such an incredible team which was led by the formidable Claire German made it hard for me to leave. I have always deep down wanted to have my own company again but this time create one with my daughters, I am a very spiritual person, 22 has always been my lucky number and turning 50 in 2022 and my daughters now grown up at 20 and 18 it felt the right time.
What do you like most about running your company?
I have learnt so so much during my 30 year career, I feel very fortunate that I now have a company where I can work on just a few very special projects a year, with ethical and like minded people and brands. Projects that feel good, where we are a natural fit aesthetically and personally. I am naturally a very curious person who loves to learn, so being flexible to combine both working with wonderful clients and still be able to soak up the inspiration of London every week is a huge blessing for me.
What is your company mission statement?
Creating Beautiful Moments.
What sets you and your business apart from competitors?
Our approach is very personal, we work very closely with our clients to create a completely bespoke event that reflects them as individuals. I have grown an amazing little black book of contacts over the years, so we can match the right creative partners for the project. We only take on a very few special projects a year and each one will liase with me directly.
Our passion is to create beautiful moments for our clients but we are also very focused on inspiring everyone to create beautiful moments of their own. Our aim with our new lifestyle Blog, 'A moment with .... ' is to inspire and empower you to create, celebrate and cherish all the beautiful moments in your life and to see the world through a magical lens. We feature interviews with some of our very favourite creatives, some are pioneers in their field, all at the top of their game and each one I admire enormously, both personally and professionally.
Career wise what are you most proud of?
Launching Caroline Foster Brown & Daughters. Whilst my daughters have their own exciting careers and futures ahead, we are also excited to grow our company together, I bring the experience of running many events over the years and they bring their fresh views on all aspects from styling, social media, marketing and digital.
What are the most rewarding aspects of what you do?
Being part of creating magical memories for people that will last a lifetime.
How would you describe your leadership style?
To treat everyone the same, to always lead by example and to roll up your sleeves!
Having three decades of experience behind me we organically become mentors to the younger, personally I believe that people grow, thrive and reach their potential when they feel secure and confident not when they feel vunerable and intimadated. Having said that, I am a perfectionist and always strive for the best so I can be firm but I hope fair.
Who would you love to collaborate with?
I would adore to collaborate in the future, anything I am passionate about with beautiful details and personalisation, lifestyle based - tablescapes, stationery, fashion, shoes, furniture, even dog collars! I have a lovely idea for a wellness product that I would adore to take worldwide one day.
Favourite part about your job?
Seeking, meeting and working with wonderful people, clients, creatives and inovators. I learn every single day.
What is the best piece of career advice you have been given?
To know your strengths and weaknesses and don’t try and be a master of all. We only have a certain amount of time, so be selective. Focus on your strengths and embrace others to complement what you do. My friend Megan Hess gave me this advice when I first started.
What advice would you offer budding entrepreneurs?
To be fully present. Select a task and give it 100%. Less distraction means you are more time efficient in the long run.
Describe yourself in 4 words
Calm, curious, loyal, meticulous.
What is your life motto?
It has to be Snoopy, my childhood fictional hero "Keep looking up, thats the secret to life." I have it inscribed on my beloved Anya Hindmarch Journals.
What books should we all read?
Think Like A Monk - Jay Shetty
The Miracle Morning - Hal Elrod
If In Doubt Wash Your Hair - Anya Hindmarch
The 5am Club - Robin Sharma
Yang Sheng: The Art of Chinese Self-Healing - Katie Brindle
Nurture - Carole Bamford
Thrive - Arianna Huffington
A Ride Of A Lifetime - Bob Igor
The Artists Way - Julia Cameron
Do you have any daily routines?
I am a massive routines person. I have followed Hal Elrod's, Miracle Morning routine for years. Based on his six rituals - S A V E R S (silence, affirmations, visualisation, excercise, reading and scribe). I wake up super early, drink my favourite tea and then practise all six rituals. I then write down what I want to get done for the rest of the day in my journal and only then I check my phone and emails. I take my dog for a walk and then begin my work day.
I try to break my work day down to micro-steps to make everything more achievable and manageble. Prior to my launch, I block out time on certain days to specific areas, Monday is social media focused where I plan my feed posts for the week, Tuesday creative time, Wednesday meetings, Thursday Marketing and Fridays website.
What is your favourite possession and why?
It would have to be my seated buddha, I fell in love with him a couple of years ago when I saw him on the Ting Ying stand at the Design Centre, to then be gifted him when I left the Design Centre was the most incredible surprise. To have something so beautiful represent such a happy time in my life and be here to guide me in my next chapter means so much to me. He happily sits on my desk and gives me immeasurable joy every time I look at him.
What is your proudest accomplishment?
Without doubt our two daughters, Isabella who is in her final year studying English Literature at University and Jemima who is about to start her gap year.
What makes you smile?
My family, my friends and our dog Bear.
What are your wardrobe staples?
Jeans, Bamford button cuff sweaters, white shirts and scarves.
Where is your favourite place to travel to?
Bali - my spirtual home.
Japan - I adore the Japanese culture. They are so progressive but also pride themselves on their heritage. We are planning another trip soon.
Where do you find inspiration?
Everywhere, an idea can spark from colours in the park to a fabric sample in a particular colour or texture.
A very dear friend of mine gifted me the book 'The Artists Way' when I started my new company, I particularly love their ritual of a weekly 'artists date' - where you plan something inspirational that is free from work obligations. So on Tuesdays I try and carve time to take myself off to see an exhibition, wander round my favourite museum or to discover a new corner of London. Something that sparks wonder and surprise and that disconnects me from anything digital.
Do you collect anything?
Baskets, wooden bowls, stones, paper, Anya Hindmarch journals (I have one for each area of my life), cookbooks and ganesh (I have one on me at all times), tea, tea pots and tea cups!
Image copyright - Caroline Foster Brown (Photographs taken by Marie de Chesse)
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