"I saw an opportunity to develop a more meaningful brand which championed integrity and authenticity so I set about sourcing beautifully-crafted interior, lifestyle and clothing pieces, made by unique and talented craftspeople. The Small Home brand was born."
Ayshea really does take sourcing her products seriously, shows in her beautifully curated collection, as well as her own home. "Our products come from all over the world: our Memah bags are handmade by traditional textile weaving communities in Mexico; our classic Mohinders are made in Athani, India the home of heirloom leather shoemaking;
our celebrated ceramics are traditionally made in Horezu, Romania; our colourful Wayuu bags are woven by the women of the Wayuu tribe in Colombia;
our bestselling bathmats are individually handwoven in Portugal using recycled remnants of the textile industry; our beautiful bud vases are handmade in Spain from 100% recycled glass; and of course our traditional slippers are handmade in Poland using time-honoured techniques."
Given her worldly collection, it's not surprising to learn that Ayshea is inspired by equally exotic and eclectic places. But she is most inspired by a destination that's closer to home. "I love the Marseille apartment of the artist Olivier Lubeck. It is a feast for the curious eye and an eclectic showcase for the fascinating items he has collected over the years.
"Olivier leads a slow-paced life and pauses to appreciate the beauty in the everyday – an approach I find inspiring. An evening with him, eating a simple supper on his balcony overlooking Marseille, is a treasured memory.
"One of the thrills of running The Small Home is that rush of excitement when I’m selecting new stock. If I don’t get an adrenaline rush – it doesn’t make the cut," explains Ayshea.
Of course that made us wonder what her favourites are...
"My slippers need first mention! Our best-selling traditional sheepskin slippers have been phenomenal and have funded the growth of the business. Their popularity means we now employ groups of families in Poland all-year-round to make them using artisan methods. Our slippers are made using highest-grade quality sheepskin - including offcuts from Rolls Royce car interiors - and are embroidered with British rare breed organic yarns. They embody the ethos of our company – authentic design meets everyday luxury.
"I use my Hampson Wood Platter daily, and looks better than ever; I love my Brickett Davda mug, which makes every cuppa more enjoyable; and the entire AMLY Botanical range which is my absolute favourite skincare range."
With such a thriving business, it's surprising and refreshing - in equal measure - to learn that Ayshea still runs her growing brand from home, but that is all part of her plan. "My ambition for The Small Home was to run a creative business from home around raising our two daughters. It’s often a challenge to juggle work and family life, but I do feel we’ve achieved that. I work hard, but don’t forget to play. I run to keep sane and do yoga to stay strong."
Also at the core of The Small Home brand - like Faune - is sustainability. "It's so important to us," confirms Ayshea. "We remain committed to our original vision of working with ethical makers who uphold high standards of craftmanship and protect traditional techniques. These traditional methods employed by our socially-responsible craftspeople don’t involve chemicals and so have a very low environmental impact.
So, when you receive our Moccasin slippers, they are in a drawstring bag made from recycled cotton and beautifully wrapped in recycled paper packaging. We aim to be plastic free as possible."
Finally, as two women in business talking to another, we had to ask what key lessons Ayshea had learned from running The Small Home.
"Key lessons I have learned since starting The Small Home journey are to trust my instinct, to focus on my own authentic vision, to listen to my customers and to always make important decisions after a good night’s sleep."
Now that's something I think we can all get behind.
Take a look at Ayshea's beautifully curated range www.thesmallhome.co.uk