OOTD and Pingis

Hi Isabella! I have followed you for several years now and I really love your blog! To be 18 years old and have someone like you as a role model is incredibly inspiring. Even though I have followed you for a long time, I have managed to miss out on how you and Pingis got to know each other and how your business journey began. It would be great if you could write a post about that. Hugs

There are actually two stories, but they come together. Pingis contacted me back in 2011 when she worked for IDG as a publisher regarding an aquisition of my magazine Egoboost. We met over lunch at Pontus, where we had our separate tables. I had a gold sign with my name on it on the lower floor and Pingis had a corner table upstairs. We decided to have lunch at Pingis’ table. However, I don’t think we ever spoke about the magazine but immediately discussed private finance. During our first lunch we came to the conclusion that we would write a book about private finance and lecture about it as well. A few weeks later we had a book contract with Forum and where booked for Avanza Forum in Globen.

OOTD: Coat MaxMara,pants Zara and shoes Massimo Dutti

…During this period (2011), Pingis and I discovered something strange – we dated the same man. However, that was no big deal for either of us, we stopped seeing him and started a company together instead. That became the start of Economista. After we had written the book that became a bestseller, we started to think about starting a beauty brand. When we wrote Economista, we spent a great deal of time at spas around the world and my sensitivity towards products became apparent. What if we were to create our own brand for us with sensitive skin and scalp, but the products still had effect? And here we are.

 

Calmer week ahead

Monday morning!

I’m really happy that this week is slightly calmer than last week. I need that. My natural instinct is to go full steam ahead at all times, so I have to actively plan some slower patches, otherwise I find it hard to slow down. When I drove home to my mom’s last weekend, I suddenly couldn’t remember the way there or which address I should type into the satnav. I had to pull over at a gas station and try a mental reboot. This might sound really scary and freak you out, but there is nothing too alarming about this. Just a warning sign that my brain is overloaded. I know how to handle my body and, as long as there is room for R&R, I can keep my work commitments at a manageable level. It was just that having a week with security company hanging over my shoulder and everything I’ve told you about before, it was just a bit too much for my brain and body.

So nothing for it but going back to basics. More sleep, more exercise, a less hectic schedule and good, wholesome, nutritious food and less wine. The sleep pattern went straight out the window as the children took turns in being awake all three nights, so I probably didn’t get more than 4 hours a night. Despite feeling tired, I went to the gym on Saturday and the kids hung out at Minisats Activity centre. When it comes to food and alcohol, I try to eat plant-based as much as possible, which means I have much more energy and last week I haven’t had more than 2 glasses of wine in total. All good. As I don’t have the kids for a few days now, I will make sure I take more walks at lunchtime (stocking up on daylight) and more peaceful sleep.

It will all come good. Anyway, now I need to rush off to a cover shoot for this magazine:


Will be in touch after lunch. Big hugs!

 

Spiderman came to visit

Gillis’ birthday has been such a success. Seven friends of his came to the party (Sheila’s, Martina’s, Nicole’s and Jenny’s children. Michaela’s had to stay at home because they were ill). We had cake, singing, presents, lucky dip, some dancing and then a special guest in the form of Spiderman, who played games with the kids and blew balloons that he made different animals out of and even hats. I got a text message to say that Spiderman was stuck in a lift, which stressed me out a little bit right at the start of the party, but when Gillis heard that he said “Mommy, I really don’t think Spiderman uses a lift. He does have his own spiderman net, you know.” Mmmmm, you’re right, I mumbled in response.




We served Spiderman cake, rawfood chocolate balls, fruit and popcorn.


Spiderman gave us a brilliant show and then took over as the games master (had hired him for an hour)


The aim of the game was that Spiderman would train all the kids how to become a superhero. They practiced sneaking around, throw a ball and hit bullseye, memory games and a few other things. Really great combo of using both the body and the mind. I thought it was really exciting too. The party went on for 2 hours and at 4.30pm I felt it was time for dinner, so I put the kids in a taxi (haven’t had time to wash Sally’s car seat properly yet) and went to restaurant Agnes and had dinner. It is a real treat to have time to hang out with them. We were home by 7pm and then straight to bed. Great birthday all around! Tomorrow he’s partying again at Odd’s.

Now I need to get some work done and enjoying a cup of tea while I’m at it. Have a photo shoot tomorrow.

 

Gillis turns 4 today!

In partnership with Jollyroom

Today my darling Gillis turns four years old! OMG, time really has flown by. We have celebrated this morning with lots of singing and lots of pressies. Sally and I sneaked downstairs at 8am-ish and pretended we needed a glass of water. They both thought that was absolutely hilarious, then Sally and I sorted out a breakfast tray and gifts and then we sneaked upstairs again to sing Happy Birthday. He got two presents in bed and the rest waited for him on the kitchen table:


… or actually, there was one gift that was waiting in the garage. Because it was a little bit too big for me to put in the kitchen.


His expression of sheer bliss when he pulled the blankets to one side and found a black electric car underneath. Wow!


Apart from that, he got walkie-talkies, some bath toys, a radio-controlled car, games, stickers and puzzle books to learn everything from numbers to English. All of this has been ordered from Jollyroom. I’ve been ordering all the children’s toys there for years. They have such a vast range that I know I’ll find everything I need there, which helps me to be super efficient.


After breakfast we went outside to play with the electric car and take it for a premier spin! Gillis also loved the fact that we can charge our cars next to each other.

Jacket from JOTT, shoes from Inuikki 

And full steam ahead round the neighborhood. We’re having a party shortly and 7 of Gillis’ friends will come home to us to celebrate with him. We’re having the same special guest and idol from last year…. 🙂

In partnership with Jollyroom

 

Calm in a crisis

Sometimes I get acutely aware that I’m on my own with the kids and I have to tackle certain situations and moments on my own. Like today for instance, when I drive away from my mom’s. She lives on a farm close to the town of Uppsala and I know Sally tends to suffer from travel sickness from time to time, but it hasn’t happened for a few months. Anyway, I can hear that sound in the back of car, the sound of a child throwing up and coughing at the same time and Gillis reacts instantly with “Mommy, Sally’s puking”, then “Mommy, SAlly can’t breathe”. Yikes. Thank goodness I am blessed with the ability to keep calm in tricky situations like this and quickly run through my mind the risk of her vomit getting stuck in her throat when she is sitting upright is pretty slim. But then I’m thinking, what if she’s found something interesting to put in her mouth, just to see what it tasted like? By this point, I’m starting to feel stressed and I speed up to get to the first possible place I can pull over. I turn on my hazard lights, climb over to the kids in the backseat, unfasten her seatbelt and without thinking I give her a good slap on the back and out it comes… a small piece of mandarin. Then we sit in silence for a short while, all of us covered in puke. I wipe as much as possible off with baby wipes, give them both a kiss and drive the last fifteen minutes home with Pippi Longstocking songs playing on the stereo.

I get both of them out of the car (will take of that later on tonight after I’ve put them to bed) and then we had a nice, long bath all three of us. Tiptoed downstairs, warmed some dinner and then we’ve had a really cozy Saturday night together. Phew, darling Sally. I will need to keep an eye on the backseat in the future, to make sure that there is nothing edible lurking back there.


Sally is wearing Gillis’ PJs and socks. Everything needs to be her big brother’s stuff. Even a little bit of chocolate on the sleeve after our dessert this evening, dark chocolate and berries. Right then, now I need to change my mental state and get on with some preparations for tomorrow when a certain little dude turns four years old!

 

Minisats and Bardot

This morning, the kids and I woke up at 6.30am, but we stayed snuggled up in bed until 8am. Chitchatted about all sorts of things and hugged lots. Then we had breakfast in the sofa and got dressed before we drove over to Minisats activity centre. The children got to play to their hearts’ content and I got to run on the treadmill for half an hour. When we eventually got home, we read a few books together and did a jigsaw puzzle too before lunch. We’re going over to my mum’s for coffee and pastries later.

By the way, I forgot to show you the pics from our business lunch yesterday. Löwengrip Care & Color and Guldkula Champagne arranged a networking lunch at my favorite place, Bardot. Why? To gather entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs and talk about the challenge one faces when the company is growing. I felt it was really successful and I’m really pleased with how it turned out.


Have a great Satuday, y’all !

 

Proud of our team

This is a person with a professional sparkle in the eye and a determined look. I am still in job mode and so pleased with great results! All the companies have taken big leaps forward. Flattered are planning great things on the other side of the Atlantic, LCC has signed a retail deal with a huge chain, Löwengrip Invest has added a new Commercial Manager to the team, I got good reviews after my appearance at SIME and the launch of my online series went really well and we’ve had 40,000 viewers on YouTube in the last five days. I did an interview with German magazine Bunte, which has 8 million readers and Nordic Tech House started a a joint venture with Fundedbyme. Yay!


I love the feeling of all the staff in the different companies really push all our boundaries, give it our best shot, not pushing the limits when it comes to health and wellbeing, but what we dare to take on and try. I have seen this look of determination in many of my colleagues’ eyes this week. New employees that have stepped into important meetings, the determined look of taking on a challenge, the posture when you decide to solve an issue. I am so proud of my team and there are many of us that now have started Friday evening, decided the weekend has started and feel that we have done really well.

I picked the children up at four, as per usual and after that we have had a cozy evening together. I have the children with me until Monday, when my days fall on Fri-Sun, it is just the best ever. Such a treat to have a whole weekend together. Tomorrow we’re going to their gran’s house and on Sunday we have a birthday party planned for Gillis. Four years ago, I was three days overdue and I was waiting for our son to arrive and to become a mummy for the first time ever. These four years have been pretty intense, to say the least, but also the best four years of my life. Now I need to do some Friday evening work, but I’ll be snuggled up in bed with my laptop, I’ll apply a face mask first, take my bra off and pour a glass of wine. I love these chilled-out evenings on my own.

 

Brand film

…It’s a wrap! All the moving content I do with Josef and he is incredibly quick which I really appreciate. He also films my online series. The result will be great and I will post the LCC film when it’s finished. Now I will be hosting a big lunch, but first I will show you some photos from today. Location: Scandic Continental:

Today’s outfit: Blouse Lou in Love, pants Acne and shoes By Malene Birger.

 

New brand film

Today LCC, or Löwengrip, which is changing name to Q2 next year, is making a brand film. In Hong Kong, Dubai and Saudi we noticed how important our brand film was when we were talking about our brand, so we are making another one. When you are pitching your brand, you only have a few minutes to get the people opposite you interested. It does not matter if you have an hour together, those fist minutes are key.

Pitching is like dancing, you have to think tactical. The first minute must stir their interest, show them that we are something else. That is what our film achieves in two minutes. The next step is to listen to what the buyer is looking for, for example, if we meet Boots, we need to know if they focus on skin care or body care next year. With their answer supporting us we tell them more in depth about ourselves and then we show them slides with positioning/pricing matrices and go to market plan. A mixture of joy and strong figures makes for a good impression.

I wrote about it earlier in another post, but a good pitch is all about minimizing the risks. I you only show them a power point and you sit down talking about it, there is a risk the company that you meet with might feel “Alright, this is the tenth company with slides today.” We are dependent on the buyer’s mental presence. That is not how you get a foot in at Bloomingdales. You have to stand out. The reaction after we have shown a short brand film (quality wise it reminds a little about the trailer for my series), were we talk about how the company started, us as founders, what makes us different from the rest etc – makes many believe that we are bigger than we are. The most common reaction from buyers around the world is “wow” and with that start it is so much easier to stand up afterwards (always stand for the sake of energy) and continue, then you have them hooked and they are more open to you.

Summary:

1. The first five minutes are vital.
2. Do something unexpected to present yourselves.
3. Listen to the client before you do your thing.
4. Ask open questions like: “How could we be a good business partner for you?”
5. Mix energy, joy and strong figures.

Talk to you later!

 

Mockberg

In partnership with Mockberg

I always wear a watch. Not just because I have a busy schedule and always need to keep track of time – it feels strange not to wear one. I have an Omega that I bought in my teens to encourage myself and a Cartier that I got from my ex husband but decided to keep because I like it so much. The dream is to own a Patek Philippe in the future but then an exit is required first. Another brand in a more affordable price range, and that I really like, is Mockberg. They make such nice, classic and minimalist watches. The name Mockberg comes from a mountain in Dalarna. The founder’s name is Elvira and she is a driven an amazing woman that I just met in the start-up phase of her company. It’s always fun to support female entrepreneurs.

A favorite of mine is the black mesh watch “Lio”. I also like the bracelet “M-bracelet”, which is available in rose gold, gold or silver. A perfect gift for Christmas, which also comes beautifully wrapped. With the discount code “isabella20”, you get 20% off the entire assortment for two weeks (until the 30/11). You can see the entire assortment here!

In partnership with Mockberg