UASHMAMA: A word many of us will not be familiar with – but one that will remain in our vocabulary from this moment onwards, thanks to this company’s unique eco-business that has turned recycling into one of the trendiest things we can do. Read on to hear from Guilia Marconi, daughter and marketing manager, on how her family combine learning, fun and discovery for this close-knit Italian crew based in the beautiful Tuscan Hills.
THE FOUNDING DUO
The humble paper bag may have you envisioning picking up some fresh bread from the bakery, and this coincidentally is where our business story begins. Emanuela, the mama, first started producing the bags for bread to sell in stores. As the enthusiasm for reusables and minimal waste continued to grow, the family saw they had a chance to grow with it. UASHMAMA roughly translates to ‘the mother who washes’ and is a tribute to Emanuela herself, “who always takes care of her children”.
Marco, the father, is known as the creative mind. He is passionate about the concepts of handmade and locally sourced, and meticulously plans the design and construction of each piece. “His mission is to ‘take care’, as he would say, of all the steps: from design, to creation and actual realization.”
FROM BREAD BAGS TO INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATIONS
Emanuela started the business with one simple, beautifully crafted product. From there the range has grown to include household items and clothing, and it’s a case of ‘all hands on deck’ to create their chic reusable paper bags and homewares from their base in Tuscany. They also have a range of beauty products made from extra virgin olive oil – in keeping with their Tuscan surroundings. Today, their four daughters Chiara, Giulia, Gemma and Gaia all actively play a part in the business; this is a family who believe in their products and want to be a part of their shared success. And what makes their products so special? They have mastered the balance between use and looks, with “Eco-Friendly Washable Paper products you will not give up on style and practicality.” They have that effortlessly sophisticated look all Italians seem to possess!
Over the years, the Marconi family have met many business owners keen to spread the word of UASHMAMA and who “with great success and professionalism, carry on the brand all over the world.” In true family business style, many of these collaborators are also family themselves; from Casey and Nicolas Languillon in Australia, to Soren and Susanne Lubech in Scandinavia. Mother-daughter pair Marion Wold and Annelot Lems based in Benelux, Holland believe that “The Marconi family over time has shown us how modern techniques and craftsmanship live side by side in UASHMAMA.”
A FAMILY AFFAIR
Guilia tells us how being part of a traditional, Italian family means their business and personal lives are entirely intertwined. Every moment is spent enjoying quality time together as three generations, admitting that sometimes they make excuses just to get together as a family. “We are italian, and we love to spend time together even after work. We love that our daughters and sons (grandchildren for Marco and Emanuela) enjoy spending time together. We spend holidays together, weekend escapes between sisters, dinner and aperitivi.”
Although they love this quality time, the founders, Marco and Emanuela, also make the most of those quiet moments to take stock. “Mum and Dad sometimes switch off their phone to avoid us and all the little ones. They need to rest and take a breath from the family”… we all need a break sometimes! But in the end, it‘s the family that has made it the success it is today – a collaborative and passionate team: “I think we are lucky. We are lucky because we are living the growth of a brand that is an integrated part of our life.”
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