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June 26, 2018 2 min read

'Within one year I was stocked in over 100 boutiques': Mother-of-three, 33, who created a booming fashion business while on maternity leave reveals how you can do it too

  • Clinical psychologist Stefanie Schwartz started the Chuchka brand in 2015

  • The popular label features a variety of neoprene totes and round towels

  • Ms Schwartz's products are now stocked in over 100 boutiques and David Jones

  • The 33-year-old entrepreneur shared her top tips for success with FEMAIL

Three years ago, Stefanie Schwartz had just given birth to her second baby.

The clinical psychologist, from Bondi Beach, was on maternity leave and wanted to start working again but didn't want to return to a full-time job. 

'I wanted a day job that I could fit in around being a full time mum and at the end of the day something I had fun with too,' Ms Schwartz tells FEMAIL.

'I also wanted to explore doing something creative.'

Despite working as child and adolescent clinical psychologist before starting a family, Ms Schwartz decided to launch a fashion accessories brand called Chuchka [meaning trinket or collectible], featuring neoprene totes and round towels.  

'I studied for six years, I worked in the public sector before I had my babies and I loved working with children and their families,' says the 33-year-old.

'After I had my own children, however, I had a pull to move in a different direction so I wanted to use my maternity leave as a ''test period'' to see whether it was something I could do and actually enjoyed.' 

While Ms Schwartz - now a mother to three boys aged six, four and six months - admits that success didn't happen overnight, the business began to expand rapidly in less than 12 months.

'Within one year of opening I was stocked in over 100 boutiques, within 18 months I was stocked in major department stores and within two years I had my own brand pop-up shop over Summer in Bondi Beach,' she recalls.

'Looking back, it's not all together surprising because I really think Chuchka fills a gap in the market for affordable, on trend, trans-seasonal fashion accessories.

'You can buy new Chuchkas every season, be fashion forward, all without breaking the bank,' she explains.

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