LumoBlue turns 2 on 3rd October!
When we first started LumoBlue we had no idea just what a lay ahead.
The idea first started around late 2019, I have an allergy to most metals. Earrings, rings, watch straps all break me out in a horrible itchy rash and I couldn't wear them for longer than a few hours.
I had mentioned to G that I had a fine collection of alternative rings, shell, wood and silicon and G being G looking into making me a few pieces of jewellery I could wear comfortably.
These were the first rings G made. Stag antler, wood and antler and antler with copper spots.
We both started looking into hypoallergenic metals, it was a whole world opened up to us! I remember casually mentioning that the market for handmade rings that don't cause irritation, is probably very high and wouldn't it be nice to give people a wide choice not only in an allergy way but also colours. So we casually started looking at even more weird and wonderful alternatives, and so the seeds of LumoBlue were sown.
G was a subsea engineer working all around the world and is incredibly talented and making just about anything! Once we had made a decision that this was something we were both passionate about we started slowly refining skills, buying metal and materials and making sure we knew what we could offer customers.
The say a job isn't a job when you find enjoyment in it and that is most definitely true with us, this quickly became our passion.
Our garage was turned into a workshop, a spare space into an office and every spare moment filled with talk of packaging, products, postage and process.
In January 2020 we aimed to open LumoBlue in the March.
I know that people see businesses as large corporate organisations, but in truth, it is just G and I, that is how it will always be.
We first planned on just selling via Facebook and Instagram, however we knew we needed a website eventually. In February we opened lumoblue.co.uk with zero, ZERO, experience. This was a huge learning curve and it was the best thing we did. I have no experience in that, my talents lie in customer service and motivational speaking so I educated myself the best I could, by our best friend Google and YouTube videos and the first version of our site was made. How we found customers I will never know, but we believe in our products and their individuality that sold themselves.
Everything was set for our launch date to be 17th March 2020, then everything changed.
I am sure for the whole world, Covid was the kicker, however two of our children were diagnosed with an incredibly rare genetic immune condition. It meant that a lot of their immune system did not work at all, the treatment and cure is a stem cell transplant. After diagnosis we knew we would eventually go to transplant and move to Newcastle's Great North Children's Hospital. In March, 4 days after we should have opened, Henry, the youngest, had chemotherapy and stem cell transplant. Followed in June by Lily, child 4 of 7, who had hers. We returned home in September 2020 knowing that Henry's transplant was already failing. Not 3 weeks after we came home we launched LumoBlue, mid Covid with 2 children recovering with very little immune system, mid-pandemic and a further 5 children at home too!
Call us crazy but we do like a challenge.
We had our first customers pretty quickly, we celebrated every single one, still do. This is is our baby and we waited with baited breath for every website visitor, every email, every like share or follow on social media. Even now, we do a little dance when someone purchases from us and one of our steadfast core values is making sure you are happy. We have worked late nights, around the kids, missed nights out, holidays, friends all to make sure we are the best that we can be, for you.
These are the first rings we sold.
LumoBlue went from strength to strength, our social media exploded, we have hundreds if not thousands of people looking on our website. We are recommended, spoken about, appeared in magazines. We are incredibly proud!
In March 2021 we were told that Henry did, in fact, need a second transplant as his first had failed. In September we returned again to Newcastle to have a second round of very intensive chemotherapy and a second stem cell transplant.
Did you notice we hadn't been quite as active on social media during that time? This is the reason why.
Thankfully after our return in March 2022 Henry is making a slow recovery, but he is recovering.
During this time away LumoBlue has flourished. We have over 5k followers on Facebook and 7k followers on Instagram, but most of all we have been able to grow and offer more products that are in-line with our core values. The sky is the limit!
We would like to thank each and everyone one of you, not only have we been able to offer rings of all kinds but we have also been able to stay at home and care for our children at a very difficult time.
Sending much love
Katie & G
and our very, large, loved, miniature army