My name is Adil Belmouden, the son of the most amazing mom, Fatima Igouzal Belmouden. In 2017, we found out that my mother was suffering from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome in both hands. In simple terms, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome occurs when there is limited space in the hand for certain parts, leading to tingling sensations, pain, or temporary disability of the fingers. As a result, my mother had to undergo surgery on both hands, which prevented her from working during her recovery. She was stuck at home, with limited use of her hands, and she found it quite dull.
During this time, I introduced her to social media, especially Instagram and Pinterest, where creative individuals gather. My mother loves being creative, crafting, and making things! On these platforms, I often showed her wool-related items, which sparked her interest. While she could still knit and crochet, it required a lot of effort and was quite minimal. Then, I came across Merino wool and showed it to her. She was fascinated because she had never seen or felt this type of wool before.
I started researching extensively to learn more about Merino wool, where to get it, and what we could do with it. Once I found it, I bought several kilograms as a surprise for my mother. “Look, mom! Look what I’ve bought, real 100% Merino wool!” I said to her. She had a big smile on her face and immediately started working on a project. “I’m going to try making something right away. Just watch!” she said. And sure enough, after an hour or so, she had created a beautiful blanket.
She showed it to me and then immediately unraveled the blanket. “Now I’m going to make something else,” she said. That’s when my mother began creating various different products. All these products can now be found on our webshop.
At that time, the webshop didn’t exist at all. But witnessing my mother’s joy, I knew this was what she wanted. This was the ultimate gift, I thought – her “own” little business!
As my mother was busy crafting, I secretly observed and learned how she made the products. I memorized the process and started experimenting on my own until I could replicate the products just like my mother. While my mother is incredibly strong – she says so, and I know it’s true – I also knew that making these products in bulk would require a lot of energy from her. So, I took over the bulk production. I created a small stock, then moved on to establishing the real business. I built a studio, created a webshop, purchased kilos of materials from all around the world, and then waited. Waited for the first order.
Nobody knew about BELM yet. I promised myself that I would surprise my mother with this gift only after receiving the first order.
Since my mother (fortunately) doesn’t have Facebook, I chose to make BELM known to the world through my “Facebook friends.” No more than 5 minutes after posting, we received the first order! I printed the order and went to my mother the next day. She opened the door, and I showed her the order, saying:
“Mama, this is BELM. Your business.”