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FeatureBusiness

A silky-smooth startup.

The founders of Scarlet and Grace reveal their journey to sweet scented success.

Jul 14, 2022


Words: Gippslandia
Images: Supplied

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With a bold vision, clear and conscientious business compass and the support of family, Scarlet & Grace has achieved a heck of a lot since their initial range of personal care products first launched four years ago.

Given their imminent European launch, we thought it was high time we heard more of the Clancy family and how they’re achieving sweet-smelling success.

Gippslandia: We understand that the concept of Scarlet & Grace began during conversations while you were holidaying on the South Coast.

Scarlet & Grace: Our family has been involved in various business ventures over the years, so ideas are always bubbling when we’re together. To generate new ideas it’s helpful to give yourself space and time to think, so a holiday’s a great chance to combine the two.

The concept started by recalling our childhood home – it was always filled with wonderful scents. But as we got older, we became aware that many of the brands contained harmful ingredients.

We felt people deserved access to products made exclusively from natural Australian ingredients. So, while sitting as a family around the table on holiday in 2016 Scarlet & Grace was born.

"...don’t believe people who sell the promise of rapid or overnight success. If you have a vision, work towards it steadily and consistently."

How did the idea evolve to the point when you released your first products?
We spent the next two years researching fragrances and building an exclusive supply chain of only pure, natural and Australian-produced materials.

With a lot of competitors already in the market, we identified that our point of difference was creating products that were natural and made from only Australian-sourced ingredients that also gave a superior fragrance.

We resisted the temptation to rush our products, instead ensuring everything was consistent with delivering the highest quality product on the market.

Our first products were released just in time for Christmas 2018.

Describe the first days of the business.
Operating out of a small warehouse, we manufactured our first products and established a handful of local retail partners to stock Scarlet & Grace products.

Those first days were both exciting and nerve-racking. When you’ve spent two years developing and perfecting your products, you just hope people will buy and enjoy them.

While sales weren’t huge that first Christmas, we got something a lot more valuable than sales – feedback.

Our retail partners instantly told us we were on to a winner. Customers returned to the stores wanting to order more. Customers told the retailers they loved the scents: the fragrance throws and they routinely reported it as the best product they’d used.

This feedback validated everything we had been working so hard to create and soon the sales volumes would follow.

Since launching, we’ve opened a new manufacturing and distribution centre in Sale, grown a network of over 150 retail partners across Australia and New Zealand, and from August this year, Scarlet & Grace will be sold across the United Kingdom and in parts of Europe.

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What has moving into international markets been like for you?
Every stage of business comes with new challenges. The European market is different to the Australian and New Zealand market, so we engaged an expert early to help guide us.

We’ve discovered that Europeans are more demanding of their brands, causing us to work deeply on ours, including on the look and feel of our logo and packaging. This was a worthwhile process and will positively impact the brand here at home.

What have been some of the biggest lessons you've learnt so far in running Scarlet & Grace?
I remember walking through a market and passing a stand that was selling various types of wall hangings with proverbs on them. I thought one encapsulated the life of an entrepreneur perfectly. It read, “God grant me patience, but hurry.”

You need to be patient. Nothing happens as quickly as you’d wish. It’s a challenging lesson to learn.

But, don’t believe people who sell the promise of rapid or overnight success. If you have a vision, work towards it steadily and consistently.

Finally, what do you think makes your goat's milk handwash a top-selling product for Scarlet & Grace?
Natural Australian goat’s milk is an amazing ingredient that we love working with. Our customers absolutely love the silky-smooth feeling the hand and body wash leaves.

Part of the success of goat’s milk products is through using essential nutrients, like vitamins B12 and E, and enriching them with Australian-made skin emollients to create a luxurious lather that invigorates, strengthens and repairs the skin.

With a strong focus on always increasing the sustainability of our products and packaging, we have expanded our soap range to include a refill pouch, which works great with our reusable soap bottles.

Scarlet & Grace home fragrance & body care products.
Scarlet & Grace home fragrance & body care products.

You can visit scarletandgrace.com.au for more information on their dreamy products today.

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