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Small Business Month: the power of working together

Posted: 2pm 19 May 2021

Two small business owners have found a way to support each other, bringing smiles to young faces at the same time. We chat to the owners of TWIGS Toy Boutique and Teaspoons Storytime during Small Business Month.

Teaspoons Storytime owner Tenille Seow says she was a long-time customer of TWIGS Toy Boutique at Strathpine Centre, when she asked owner Michelle Johansen if she would consider stocking a children’s story book she was working on.

When Michelle said yes, Tenille realised she could build a business, reading other authors’ stories in the meantime. The mother-of-three quit her job of 12 years, launching her business in February and finding a way to support Michelle’s business at the same time.

She now sources toys and books from TWIGS Toy Boutique to use, when performing at kindergartens and childcare centres. Sammy the Sloth is a favourite.

TWIGS’s mission is to re-ignite creativity, imagination and play-based learning in every family. It has a range of ecofriendly and sensible products, thoughtfully sourced by Michelle.

Returning the favour

In return, Michelle has been happy to promote Tenille’s business and will host storytime sessions during the school holidays.

“We are both local businesses, trying to support each other,” Tenille says.

“It evolves each week. We come up with different ideas to help each other. Michelle’s been going for six years and got through COVID, stronger than before.

“I’m new to running a business, so she’s given me tips on how to do that. It’s good to have a mentor.”

TWIGS Toy Boutique was founded in 2015 in a small shopfront at Lawnton. It has since moved to Strathpine Centre.

Teaspoons Storytime visits kindergartens, childcare centres and schools across the Moreton Bay Region and beyond.

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