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A Conversation With Alice Edwards: Memo Press

Alice Edwards is the former Tatler and Sunday Times Style Jewellery Editor and founder of the beautiful, bespoke stationery company, Memo Press.  Memo Press is hand-painted and personalised by Alice with a delicate colour palate and is the last word in chic.  Alice is mother to Kit and Honor and lives in London with her husband and children.  She is a Littlest Luxuries consignor and customer. 

 

Alice Edwards Memo Press

 

Congratulations on the success of Memo Press. How did you come up with the idea? 

 

Thank you so much! The idea of Memo and launching the company happened all really quickly in the Summer of last year. I was coming to a point in my life where I truly wanted to launch my own business. When brainstorming the minute I wrote down stationery, I knew that was the path for me. I’ve long made my own cards for friends and family, having been largely disappointed with what’s out there. So in starting Memo I felt like at least I would satisfy my own purchasing demands and hopefully a few others would feel the same too.

 

Memo Press Alice Edwards 

 

How do you find juggling the business with looking after your children?  Do you have any tips for anyone who is thinking of taking the plunge and branching out on their own?  

 

My step-mum (who’s wildly successful and has started more than one business) once told me that running your own thing is 24/7 if only in your head. That is certainly true. I absolutely love it but definitely agonise over decisions and take things very personally in a way I perhaps wouldn’t if it was my own company. That said, I find the flexibility of being my own boss completely liberating and wouldn’t change it for the world. For the first time since becoming a parent I know I won’t miss the things I don’t want to, though that sometimes means working at odd hours or weekends. It’s a trade off I’m more than happy to make. I’m not sure I’m seasoned enough to offer any tips just yet!

 

With the growing trend for sustainability, have you found it hard to launch in a sector that, historically doesn’t have the best green credentials? 

 

It always felt baffling to me that greetings cards come in tiny plastic wrappers. To be honest that was a major motivation for me to start Memo. As the mother of two children, I spend a lot of time wrapping presents and buying cards for children’s birthday parties and the mountains of completely unnecessary plastic are heartbreaking. For instance even though most cards are now printed on recycled paper, they’re often plastic coated which makes them impossible to recycle in this country. Paper needs to be both recycled and recyclable. Also for those that say some of the plastic sleeves are compostable - they’re really not. Everything we do is plastic free from the packaging to the tracing paper sleeves the greetings cards come in. It’s by no means perfect and I’m constantly looking for ways to improve - for instance three of our ribbon colours are made from recycled plastic bottles but that means 7 colours aren’t. Ribbon isn’t recyclable so I hope people reuse it but that’s definitely an area we need to improve on. Memo is totally open source which means I’m happy to share our suppliers (and have quite a bit to other small businesses) and we’re also totally open to suggestions too. I feel that when it comes to something as big as this we have to share information as we’re all aiming for the same thing.

 

Alice Edwards Memo Press 

 

Alice, you have such a beautiful sense of style, both in how you dress yourself and your children.  I’m sure that people would be surprised that you buy preloved for your children.  Do you have any favourite pieces that you’ve purchased from us? 

 

That is so kind of you to say. Buying preloved is a total joy, I also buy a lot for myself from preloved sites. Not only are things often completely unworn but the price tag is a complete relief too. Also, the clothes are just so much nicer! My all time favourite piece from LL has to be a mohair cream cardigan with tiny gold flecks from Bonpoint. It’s probably Honor’s favourite piece too!

 

 Alice Edwards Memo Press

 

 We love how you dress both of your children and your pieces always sell out super quickly.  Which are your favourite brands for Honor?

 

 I absolutely love La Coqueta, Pepa and Bonpoint of course - they’re all classic but never twee and so beautifully made.

 

 Alice Edwards Memo Press La Coqueta 

 

 Dressing boys can be particularly hard. From my experience with my son, it is tricky to find a balance between them being comfortable but still refined, and there are far too many loud colours and prints.  What are your favourite brands for Kit? 

 

Oh my goodness yes! Kit is also much more specific about what he wears than his big sister. I love Ralph Lauren for Kit, Il Gufo and Rachel Riley knits are beautiful.

 

 Alice Edwards Memo Press

You have quite a traditional aesthetic in how you dress your children.  They are still quite little and they always look divine.  Are they always amenable to wearing what you want them to?

 

Luckily for now our tastes do seem to be relatively aligned. I’m aware this might change and I’m already emotionally preparing myself. We choose much of their clothes together, as there’s little point in me buying something if they simply don’t like it. Getting them dressed is then pretty easy as their wardrobes are already a small selection of pieces we both like. 

 

Your home was recently featured in Town & Country Magazine.  How do you balance having a such a beautiful space when sharing it with your little ones?

 

Such a dream come true, I’ve been a fan of T&C for years and was so excited when it launched in the UK. I think I’m naturally quite a tidy person but we’re fortunate to have a playroom and frankly that saves everything. The playroom often looks like we’ve been burgled but at least it has double doors I can shut and pretend it doesn’t exist. Also I have to say the children are pretty good at understanding that in our home there are shared spaces, adult spaces and then their spaces (I also have to remind my husband of this as he’d like the playroom tidier than it is at all times). Having that balance means they can roam free in their bedrooms and playroom whilst understanding to try and be respectful to the rest of the house. Obviously this often all falls apart.