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Wow, it does feel like a hot minute and a half since our last blog? It’s been a mad few months from Christmas leading up to Chinese New Year and Valentine’s. And if you don’t already know, we are partnering with @SundaySocialMarket to bring you even more local brands & businesses.
As we continue to #SupportLocal, we want to bring the spotlight on some of the local brands who have been familiar faces at our bazaars so far. This week, we are shining the light on these young siblings, Natasha & Nathaniel from @Kokeball.sg
Why did you start kokeball – what inspired you
Natasha: Kokeball began as an experimental journey with plants. I never had green thumbs/fingers, as people call it, and never had the confidence to grow or sustain plants. But while I was living in Melbourne, a good friend had passed me a Monstera deliciosa cutting to try out. By the time I left Melbourne a year later, the 2 leaves grew in a 10 leaf plant. When I was back in Singapore, I was determined to continue growing / keeping my own plants by understanding the environment each plant thrives in. I was also inspired by Singapore’s urban space and tapped on the Japanese’ knack for minimalistic aesthetics to create a plant form that can be introduced easily into apartments, and easy for busy city-dwellers to care for.
Why with your brother?
Nathaniel: I joined halfway through the venture and am a plant convert myself. I joined Kokeball with the purpose to apply what I learn in school in a practical way. Beyond classroom learning, the lessons and experience I’ve gained has been extremely valuable and I’ve grown so much since! It is rewarding to be able to work in a start-up environment that champions a good cause and work on something you can truly call your own. Plants are not scary to care for!
How's it like working with your brother?
Both: Working with family is a blessing! We have great synergy - Sometimes when we’re in the thick of discussion, our friends and family would say that we’re speaking another language. Growing up in a tight-knit family, we know each other’s working style and work ethic well, and we bring different talents or skills to the table. People are always amused to find out we’re siblings when we are at events or conducting workshops.
Are you both still keeping your day jobs or is this full time?
Both: This is part-time for us, so we start working on Kokeball things after study or work hours and especially during the weekend when we have a full day. It takes extreme discipline and concentration to balance our current roles and what we do for Kokeball!
What are your plans for Kokeball?
Both: We have always wanted Kokeball to equip and empower others with the confidence to cultivate their own tabletop gardens wherever they are. We hope to expand Kokeball so that more people will come to know the wonders of gardening and craft - We are also looking for part-time instructors so please drop us an email if you are interested!
What have you learnt while on this journey so far?
Both: We have learnt so many things while building the business that we couldn’t have from the classroom. Doing business in the real world requires real guts and absolute belief in yourself. We are also very thankful for the friends and family who have supported us on this journey - They are a very big part of our growth and success thus far!
What would you want to say to business owners who are just starting out, having a side hustle or planning to start out?
Natasha: A business is platform and being an entrepreneur means you are a leader - Never forget that you have the power to influence and empower the people and wider community around you!
If you haven’t yet met these 2 wonderful people bringing plant joy to the world, 1 ball at a time, be sure to keep your eye out for them. They hang at our space every now and then over the weekend.
OH.. and one last thing...come join us this Sunday, 7 March and come #SupportLocal with us @Sunday Social (Distancing) Market! Remember to stay safe and keep your #socialdistance!