Like many parents Solvej found it hard to provide her first baby with the darkness she needed to get a good night’s sleep away from home. After struggling to rig up blackout blinds and feeling her way around darkened rooms, the idea for the Content&Calm Cot Canopy was born. Solvej explains, "After talking to lots of mums, carers and nursery professionals, it was clear there was a need for this type of product." Solvej decided to leave her career as one of the UK’s leading advertising lawyers to develop this innovative concept and bring it to market.
The Cot Canopy is a portable canopy that fits over all standard cots and travel cots to provide the darkness and consistent environment that helps babies and toddlers to sleep well even when the lights are on, or the sun is streaming through the windows. The inside layer of darkened mesh also protects against insects and other creepy crawlies and even the family cat. Solvej continues, "At home or when travelling the Cot Canopy creates nightime when it’s light time and supports baby’s personal and precious sleep routine. From our extensive consumer feedback we know that the protection the Cot Canopy gives from cats and insects has been a welcome added bonus for users.
The Cot Canopy is now recognised by a wide range of professionals, including Vicki Scott, leading midwife and baby wellbeing advisor with a regular slot on GMTV in January 2010 who comments, "The Cot Canopy is brilliant in that it helps parents to maintain consistency and routine, which is really what bringing up a healthy and happy child is all about."
With the Cot Canopy’s success, Solvej has had to learn how to manage a successful business and the inevitable long hours alongside a busy family life. "I have to juggle everything. Many people think that if you run your own business you have huge amount of flexibility but the truth is if you want your business to grow you have to be willing to give it your all. I work harder now than I ever have but I try to do things late at night and early in the morning so that I can be with my son and daughter when they get home from school."
However, despite her already long hours, Solvej is eager to expand the Content&Calm range further with the launch of the unique ProtectiShade. The ProtectiShade, like the Cot Canopy was inspired by Solvej’s own experiences as a mother. Solvej explains, "Like so many mothers, I have struggled to shade my children effectively during car journeys – stuck on window shades only work if the sun comes from the side and can easily fall off or be pulled off. With sun often streaming through the front windshield, a child can only be properly shaded with a full 360o shade that can extend to the lap. The patented ProtectiShade provides all the shade your child needs to travel in comfort." The Protectishade looks set to be as big a success as the Cot Canopy and on the day of its trade launch the ProtectiShade was awarded "Travel Accessory of the Year" by the Baby Products Association.
In addition to the ProtectiShade, Solvej also plans to launch the TrayKit this summer. The TrayKit is a kids’ briefcase style backpack that straps to airline, train and car tray tables. It holds itself open even when the passenger in front reclines their seat and is specifically designed to stop playthings rolling onto the floor. The Content&Calm TrayKit will also encourage and teach children to pack and take care of their own special things!
For more information visit www.contentandcalm.com