• Interview with Alison Heden from The Monarch Mag
Interview with Alison Heden from The Monarch Mag


I recently had the pleasure of sitting down with Susana Goldin-Douaire from Bonjour Baby Baskets.  We perched in the corner of Boxcar Social in Toronto and spoke about motherhood, being a grand parent, entrepreneurial spirit and most importantly the journey her business has been on since it started just 2 years ago.

One of the highlights of our conversation that made me chuckle was when she told me she started the business to make 5-10 baskets a year to help a few people in the city put together beautiful baby gifts.  It made me chuckle and burst with excitement because she has gone far beyond her initial expectations and is now serving both private and corporate clients across North America.  She is passionate about her business and quite obviously makes every decision with great care and intelligence.   Her attention to detail and eye for design and quality shine through her in beautiful and thoughtful baskets.  Here are a few snippets from our coffee date:

 What is the greatest lesson you have learned in motherhood?

As moms, we are constantly helping our kids make the best decisions, until they are big enough that they can make their own. The greatest lesson I learned is not to doubt your decisions. The best one is the one you just made with the information that you had available at the time.

Choose your battles and think of the big picture. For me the big picture was how to make my kids confident and kind people.

 What is it like to work with your children?

I love it! They are my consultants and mentors. I am very fortunate that they are all very talented in professions related to my business and I trust their opinions and suggestions. I have first-hand expertise in Advertising, Marketing, Web-design and Styling. How lucky am I?

 What was it like to become a grandmother?

It’s the most beautiful feeling in the world. There is no bigger happiness than to see your kids happiness and when they have their own children you can see and feel their joy as you felt it when you had them. It is a complete circle.

 How do you find the brands you collaborate with?

The options are amazing and plentiful. It is great to see how many young designers are producing beautiful collections of excellent quality every single day. We do lots of research and we take our time to choose only quality products that we would love to see on our grandkids. We attend many fashion shows but even there we do some research prior to attending. Sometimes we are contacted directly by the designers that would like to be featured on our baskets.

 What inspires you?

My children are my inspiration, every day. All my life.

 Has social media improved or aided your business at all?

Absolutely! We have met fabulous mompreneurs through Social Media that otherwise we wouldn’t have met. We hear their stories and experiences, we learn from them. We are also able to share the new collections with our fans in real time and it helps us to observe trends.

 What do you find challenging about social media?

It is very time consuming and as a small business owner there is not enough time in a day to fulfill the constant Social Media interaction. Having said that, we love that interaction, so we are constantly trying to find a balance.

 What is the most challenging part of running your business?

I am a very organized and pro-active person and that helps a lot, but I wish the days were a little longer. There is just not enough time to do everything.

 Where are your favourite places to go in Toronto with your family?

I love Toronto! There are so many wonderful and diverse restaurants and attractions for the entire family.  We love discovering little treasures that are “off the beaten path” like the small children’s theater Solar Stage where I took my older granddaughter to see Munsch Mash, a play based on the lovely Robert Munsch’s children books.  Celebrating my wedding anniversary with a delicious lunch at Dundas Park Kitchen in Roncesvalles area where Chefs Alex Tso and Melanie Harris delighted us with their delicious sandwiches, soups and quiches. This is what Toronto is about!

Written by: Alison Heden here
Images supplied by: Bonjour Baby Baskets

The Monarch Mag  is an  online publication curating fresh trends and destinations for moms founded by two sisters Tracy McMaster and Alison Heden.

 The Monarch Mag Online Publication

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