Welcome to my first ever blog !! Thought you might like a bit of background of how this all happened......About two years ago I attended a Midwifery conference in Wellington and saw a flax basket for burying a placenta - Ipu Whenua. I loved the idea and wondered if Parents in Hawkes Bay would like the idea too? After talking with many parents in my classes (I'm a Birth Educator - I teach Antenatal Classes) I decided to make these available for parents who were wanting to bury their placenta in a holistic, biodegradable way.
I changed the ketes from the original one I had seen, wanting to make it ''my own'' changing the range of adornments, the way it's tied together, adding a poem, tweaking the instructions, sourcing a biodegradable bag and the way the whole Ipu Whenua is presented.
I spoke with my local District Health Board with the hopes that they would like to be able to offer parents these as well. The Midwifery Board thought they were great and also asked if I could make a bigger version that a stillborn baby could be placed in. I set about sourcing a larger kete and some beautiful soft muslin that would line the kete. I am very pleased to say they have both of these options available to parents.
I loved the idea that each time I design a kete it is unique, each one is different and as a very creative person this sits well with my creative needs.
Things ticked along nicely, but I did start thinking about what else we might be able to bury in a biodegradable way.... of course my thinking led me to cremated remains of people and pets. I spoke with several local funeral directors and vets about what their needs would be. Each being quite different ! Back to the drawing board.... coming up with smaller sizes for cats and dogs and a larger kete for adult remains. Different instructions and poems too.
Sales took off, with a local funeral director very kindly taking a few of my ketes to a Funeral Directors Association Conference with her. Lots liked the idea, as with traditional containers for ashes, most tended to be something that was ''urn'' like, not something families usually wanted to bury. I have many national funeral directors now making these available to their families.
With ideas and sales picking up pace, a revamp of flyers was needed, a new logo to reflect the product better (thanks Karen !!) business cards, a website (thanks for checking it out!!) a press release (thanks Rohani !!) and sorting out where and how to advertise best - to make people aware of their options regarding biodegradable burials.
A photo shoot happened last Friday - excitingly waiting the photos to proof !! I have also tracked down some brown kraft bags for the Ipu Whenua to ''gift'' them in, rather than up cycling a plastic bag (not very earth friendly).
So, you are pretty much up to date now...thanks for reading !