Mumtrepreneurs: savvy and successful stay at home mums

By Lauren Leisk, Yahoo7 Moneyhound Updated May 24, 2012, 1:49 pm

Stay at home mums who are finding ways to work from home, run a business and still contribute to household income.

It’s amazing what kinds of ideas pop into your head when you have a baby and time off from work.

No, not ideas about diaper costs or baby milk formula but ideas for a startup business. Mothers are the new entrepreneurs.

It doesn't end there. A high fraction will go on to have even more children once their business takes off.

The growing trend in ‘mumtrepreneurs’ is fuelled by rising childcare costs and the lengthy commute times required to get to and from work.

As a result, working from home, being your own boss and being able to balance family life are very attractive propositions for new mothers wanting to financially contribute to the household without giving up the kids.

Meet the three women who successfully set up a business while on maternity leave and never went back:

Mirabai Winford

32-year-old Mirabai Winford is a mother of two who went from being a law student and part-time retail worker to the creative director and founder of organic baby and children's wear company, Purebaby.

Mirabai discovered a hole in the baby market when she couldn't find any organic baby clothing while pregnant with her first child, Samara. She began researching the idea, sourced material from India with her husband's assistance and made Purebaby happen.

Today the brand is stocked nationally and sold overseas in the US, New Zealand, Singapore and France.

More from Moneyhound: Make working from home work for you

Leigh Kostiainen

Leigh Kostiainen is a work-from-home mother with two boys and founder of two new social networking sites in Australia.

Like many mothers, Leigh lost her corporate drive after having children. When her first child was at school and her two-year-old was at home, she began looking for her ideal small business and found her niche. That’s when she launched Hire My Mum.

The online boutique job board specialises in helping Australian mothers find work-from-home jobs within school hours, empowering them to simultaneously raise their children and contribute to household finances.

More from Moneyhound: How to save money on childcare

Katrina Hedderwick

In 2005, Katrina Hedderwick formed S.O.H. Sleepy Baby Bouquets during maternity leave.

Katrina wanted a job that allowed her to stay at home with her child and still generate income. Having researched numerous mumtrepreneur business strategies in the US, she discovered a concept that she used to form her own home-based business that satisfies her Victorian market: S.O.H. Sleepy Baby Bouquets. The business delivers stunning gift creations and hampers for expectant and new mums.

Jody Allen

Jody Allen, mother of two, has always been frugal with her money, but when she started blogging about her tips and tricks on how to save money around the home, she couldn't believe the following she would gain. In less than twelve months, Stay at Home Mum now has over 65,000 likes on Facebook and is the largest Parenting Facebook Page in Australia, and is all run from her dining room table at home.

Jody's website Stay at Home Mum is all about frugal living, cheap recipes and how to budget and save on a limited income.

Hot tips for starting your own home-business:

  • Find your niche – If there's potential to make money from your hobby, use your elitist skills and do it. First identify a need and demand for your idea before you invest time, money and energy to get it off the ground.
  • Plan ahead – Research, have a strong business plan and a supportive partner.
  • Strike a balance – You're going to be working weird, flexible hours, so find harmony between work and home life.
  • Join a network group – Group sites like Business Mums Network and Connect2Mums will put you in contact with likeminded mothers, provide new opportunities and keep you motivated.
  • Speak to other mumtrepreneurs – Ask them how they did it, learn from their ups and downs and develop your own strategy.
  • Success isn't easy – Running a business is hard work. Believe in yourself and push on to reach your goals.

Having a child doesn’t have to be the end of your working life.

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