• Jenna Hill-Wood and her wife couldn't find a baby record book for two mums - so they decided to do something about it. (our_first_story / Instagram)
Jenna Hill-Wood and her wife were searching for a baby record book for "two mummies" while they were expecting, and couldn't find one. So, they made their own.
By
Chloe Sargeant

17 Oct 2017 - 2:41 PM  UPDATED 17 Oct 2017 - 2:41 PM

Our First Story, a UK-based LGBTQ+ baby book company, was founded earlier this year after a lesbian couple realised there weren't any baby record books specifically for same-sex couples. 

Jenna Hill-Wood and her wife Lydia were expecting a child and began looking for a baby book that had pages inclusive of their relationship and their roles as mothers. They could not find one, despite hours of searching. 

Hill-Wood tells me, "I began Our First Story because while my wife and I were expecting our first child - we could not find a baby record book anywhere which was aimed at two mummies. 

"As our daughter was born, we went to a store called Paperchase, where we then noticed a baby record book which said 'Parent & Parent'. My wife and I strongly feel we are both mummies and didn't want to be referred to as a 'Parent'."

Hill-Wood also explains that they felt it important to list the information about their IVF donor, and the journey that they'd experienced in order for their daughter to arrive into the world. Alas, they couldn't find a book that had this option, either.

So, they decided to make their own baby book, and it received an overwhelmingly positive response. "[We] had so much feedback and suggestions of creating them for the market - and so the official Our First Story began."

Hill-Wood used her maternity leave to begin creating the books. "While our baby would sleep or others were giving her cuddles, I'd find time for design and layouts - as well as looking into printers and suppliers."

The company launched in July this year, with the first official 'Our First Story' products being released to the public at the beginning of October. 

Apart from listing 'Mum & Mum' or 'Dad & Dad', a major difference about the couple's product is that the books are personalisable, and parents have the opportunity to include spaces and pages about the sperm donor, egg donor, or surrogate that made their pregnancy possible.

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The books also include space to write about the journey that led up to the birth of their baby. Hill-Wood explains to me that IVF/IUI treatment can be an incredibly difficult journey, and documenting it is important to many same-sex couples.

"Treatment (IVF/IUI) is a tough journey. Absolute rollercoaster - but being able to announce you are pregnant and then enjoying your pregnancy journey is a big deal."

Along with the in-demand baby record books, the new company also makes greeting cards specifically for same-sex couples who are expecting - which also came about from the couple's personal experience: "I know our families and friends struggled to find cards which were directed to two mummies. They often brought cards that said 'mummy' and added an ''s' on the end!"

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Hill-Wood says that it's simply a matter of inclusivity. 

"Although there are now some 'Mrs & Mrs' or 'Mr & Mr' cards for weddings, there are none on the market for same sex parents - for same-sex baby showers, or congratulations, or births etc." she explains. "I think without having access to these things [same-sex couples] have to make do, as opposed to feeling like products are readily available for us."

"I really hope my books and cards (and any future work) does have a positive effect on the market - currently my books are at a higher cost than I would like purely due to printing costs. I'd love to be able to bring the costs of my book down to the same price as a heterosexual [couple's baby] book."

All images supplied via Our First Story.

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