Fern and Frost

 Fern and Frost

Photo: Jakub Fabijanski

Fern and Frost

By Annebelle van Tongeren, Bass Coast startup

A line of simple, quality products and links to relaxation support ideas, to create the habit of self-care
Fern & Frost is a beautiful eco conscious collection to help people cultivate the habit of self-care supported by free online relaxations and other resources. It started as an idea of creating balms and eye pillows to help people relax and grew from that seed. Annebelle van Tongeren tells us how she found out about Startup Gippsland Program.


Startup Gippsland: How did you learn about Startup Gippsland and what was your first thought about it?

Annebelle: I learned about Startup Gippsland on Facebook and initially thought I was too old but I got a sense of inclusivity from the marketing videos I watched and decided to apply.

Startup Gippsland: Why did you want to join the program? What was the problem you were trying to solve?

Annebelle: I needed coaching on many levels and mentoring. Training wheels and encouragement!

Startup Gippsland: What was your experience like in the 12 weeks of the program? 

Annebelle: Loved every second of it. Especially the mentoring. And the online presentations by guest speakers. I got far more out of the program than I expected to.

Startup Gippsland: What are the biggest benefits of you undertaking the program? Can you provide an example of how it worked for you?

Annebelle: The training gave me lots of ideas and practical strategies to launch and stay grounded. And the mentoring got me out of my own way, which I think was my greatest challenge.

Startup Gippsland: Have you discovered new or different users for your product/service, compared with original expectations? Are you still pursuing your original startup idea? 

Annebelle: I didn’t expect initially to be offering the online support to the product range. I had a bunch of various skills but didn’t see a way to integrate them. The training brought clarity to that process. And now the online component is as important as the actual products.

Startup Gippsland: What was your biggest success after undertaking the program? Personal or professional (or both)! 

Annebelle: Winning the most improved entrepreneur award gave me a lovely cash injection to help me launch. Thanks!

Startup Gippsland: what was the most important skill you’ve learnt, and a realisation you’ve had during/after the program?

Annebelle: That mentoring is everything. Be open to being coached creates pathways you wouldn’t consider otherwise.

Startup Gippsland: Anything else you’d like to add?

Annebelle: Head to www.fernandfrost.com.au to check out our locally made eco conscious products and settle into one of our free online relaxations. Your body and mind will thank you!


“Loved every second of it. Especially the mentoring. And the online presentations by guest speakers. I got far more out of the program than I expected to.”

Annebelle won the Most Improved Entrepreneur Prize, sponsored by TAFE Gippsland

Annebelle’s program mentor was Shannon Davies, SD Planning

Her mentor Shannon Davies said…

“I found that Startup Gippsland was structured so that my mentee got all the advice and facts she needed from the program. Through our mentoring we explored her journey and challenged beliefs. I was able to provide a sounding board and critical feedback.” 

Shannon Davies, Startup Gippsland Mentor, Director, SD Planning

Watch Annebelle’s winning pitch

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