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Baby-making venture snaps at opportunity

BUNDLE OF JOY: Sandra and Brendon Moffatt have founded the world's first fully articulated, new-born model and are exporting to 56 countries.
BUNDLE OF JOY: Sandra and Brendon Moffatt have founded the world's first fully articulated, new-born model and are exporting to 56 countries. Rob Williams

ONE Springfield Lakes couple has been busy making babies - but not the kind you're thinking of.

Sandra and Brendon Moffatt are the proud parents of StandInBaby; a life-like, new-born baby mannequin used as a training aid for photographers.

Testament to the theory that necessity is the mother of invention, award-winning photographer Sandra said the idea came after searching for a baby training aid but finding nothing.

"Brendon and I searched everywhere but we couldn't find anything, so we created our own,” Mrs Moffatt said.

"As a small business we also needed to be able to train our staff quickly and in a way that meant they represented the standard of photography we provide at our studio.

"We ended up re-mortgaging our house to fund the business and while it's been challenging and uncomfortable, we're more driven to succeed because of those experiences.”

Sandra and Brendon Moffatt, founders of StandInBaby, the worlds first, fully articulated, lifelike, newborn model is being exported to 56 countries around the world.
Sandra and Brendon Moffatt, founders of StandInBaby, the worlds first, fully articulated, lifelike, newborn model is being exported to 56 countries around the world. Rob Williams

The parents of two real-life children started their business in 2014 and now sell their SIBs to 56 countries around the world.

The StandInBaby matches the average size and weight of a baby aged between two and 10 days old and comprises dozens of unique parts that move and feel exactly like a newborn.

Another major driver behind the product was the couple's desire to educate parents and photographers around the risks associated with newborn photography and said it was alarming just how many people were doing it wrong.

"If you go into any of the Facebook groups, there are lots of photographers on there who are still just learning and a lot of it is cringe-worthy because it's just so unsafe,” Mrs Moffat said.

"In March we actually got together with a neo-natal nurse and I showed her how we did all the poses and she went through and advised us on what was safe, corrected us on some things and there were even things I was doing that were wrong and I've been shooting babies for almost 10 years.

"I've done a free video series to try to educate people to do things safer because there are no regulations in the industry, so the only thing you need to call yourself a newborn photographer is a camera. I want to change that.”

The rest of the world is waking up to the revolutionary product, with enquiries now coming from America looking to use the babies in the testing of their vehicles, as well as models for baby hats and parenting practice tools.

One StandInBaby costs $1100.

Topics:  ipswich business photography