Romford mum's success setting up children's clothing business amid pandemic

Tina Rahman and son Ryaan

Tina was inspired to set up Closet 23 after having son Ryaan - Credit: Tina Rahman

A Romford mum who launched a children's clothes shop last year has grown her business during lockdown and was making £4,000 per month at the height of the pandemic.

In March last year, Tina Rahman was made redundant from her job as an operations manager in the medical industry, and thought she had hit rock bottom.

She explained: “I lost everything.

“I lost my job, I was at the brink of losing my house.

“I had no money coming in and had a little boy I needed to feed.

“I have to say it was one of the scariest times of my life.”

But with the encouragement of kitchen designer husband Raju Uddin, Tina decided to pursue her passion in luxury baby clothing.

Closet 23 picture

The store sells exclusive, luxury brands for children. - Credit: Closet 23

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“He pushed me to do it, and make something of myself,” she said.

“I had so much experience in sales from my previous work which I could use for this.”

When her son Ryaan was born in 2018, she became interested in finding alternative outfits to the ones she saw in mainstream shops, preferring to dress him in lavish designer clothing.

Tina’s boutique shop Closet 23, which named after her son’s birthday September 23, brought together alternative children’s clothing brands.

“Romford mums love frills and fabric and lace,” she explained.

“And that’s exactly who we cater for.”

boy and girl in designer clothes

Closet 23 incorporates frills, layers of fabric and other 'regal' clothing - Credit: Closet 23

Tina prides herself on the exclusive brands she sells, such as Spanish brands Artesania Granlei and Mebi, but stressed Closet 23 offers products with a diverse price range as well. 

With customers in Asia, Germany and the USA, Romford born-and-bred Tina now has an international presence, yet she said she wants to support others closer to home. 

The entrepreneur has over 17,000 followers on her Instagram account @closet23_ and  is encouraging other mums to follow their passions, 

girl in designer dress

The store's slogan is 'luxury brands for little people' - Credit: Closet 23

She stressed the need to plan their businesses meticulously and set themselves regular goals.

She added: “And if you don’t reach your targets, that’s a good thing, because then you can work out what went wrong and do better next time.

“It’s so important for mums to know not to give up, and know I’m here to help and want to make a difference.”