“In elementary school, I started sewing and it was my hobby through growing up and education. Creativity prevailed in me and just over a year ago I quit my job at a corporation and bravely entered this creative world. Creativity has always been in me and I was always sewing something, making decorations and similar. But when I found out my niece was coming into the world, I wanted to make her lots of special details for the room and the crib. She soon had a fairy tale room with special pillows and details. I received a lot of praise for my work, as well as inquiries, and it all encouraged me to launch my own IRKI brand”, Irena Budimir recalled her beginnings.
When she decided to make pillows, she was guided by the fact that besides beauty, she really needs to think of the function of pillows so she decided that all pillows were big, with a diameter of 50 – 60 cm and can easily fit into children’s rooms and other living spaces.
“The moon pillow can also be used by mothers to help them while breastfeeding, then there are hearts that even boys order for their girls, there is a cloud, a star, a pillow of princesses and a pillow of crowns, which is especially personalized with birth information. Heavenly body-shaped pillows are great for playing with and developing imagination for toddlers. We place particular emphasis on the pillow in the form of angel wings and the Princess pillow, which is my own design”, she said.
IRKI also offers name or star garlands, a magic wand for little princesses and princes, personalized blankets that can be used for children from birth to preschool, and has recently included large bags for sitting and resting for everyone.
Apart from its beautiful design and personalized products, the IRKI range is recognizable by the quality of each pillow. “Each pillow is precisely sewn with an individual approach, filled with anti-allergic silicone filling and made of quality material. The pillows are available in white, gold, silver, pink and blue.”
“Making one pillow depends on the desired model. When it comes to tailoring, then sewing and personalization, and then filling the pillow, it takes a minimum of one hour to an hour and a half for one pillow”, she explained in details, singling out the Angel Wings pillow: “Once I received a request which required some special gift for the sacrament of baptism. Immediately I envisioned a pillow shaped like angel wings. It just kind of fitted the occasion because I see new-borns as little angels on earth. The customer’s expectations were another approval and the confirmation for me that this job is special because every order can create a different product”.
With her first year behind her, Irena is pleased with the direction IRKI is developing, and she plans to expand the IRKI team with the introduction of innovations that will round out the IRKI story. “Taught by the reactions of visitors at markets, I want to develop other sales channels as well. It is precisely the Zagreb Crafts Shop that is the first step towards the goal of getting customers to get to know the IRKI world”, she said.