I feel like I have come quite a long way in a short period of time this year, trying to get this venture off the ground, and have been thinking about how I have managed to do that. The one thing that I keep coming back to is that I wouldn’t have been able to get this far without the help and support of so many local businesses and local people, so I thought it right and proper to take a little time to thank them, so here goes!
First on the list is the lovely Jill Peer. She is a member of the Malvern Hills Gallery and has her fingers in lots of crafty pies! She runs The Pixley Crafters, of which I am a member – we are a craft group who meet a couple of times a month in various Malvern pubs to discuss crafty type stuff – its lots of fun, a great source of inspiration, and also a great place to learn about how the art and craft world works. Jill has been so kind, friendly, helpful and supportive – and a great laugh too – what more could you want! You can check her out over on her website… http://www.jillpeertreatments.com/index.htm
Second on the list is Steve a.k.a. Your Picture Framer. He has provided the most amazing service, so much more than you would get from a national or an online service. It is great being able to get to his and back to pick up mounts in under 20 minutes! And to be able to phone up in a panic at gone 6pm about some mounts and then be able to go and pick up the new ones under an hour later – what more could one ask for?! So if you are in need of a high quality, friendly, fast picture framing and mount making service, you really only need to contact this chap – http://www.yourpictureframer.co.uk/
Third is Mr Sean Austin at Austin & Co. which is a fantastic independent card and stationery shop in Malvern ( http://www.austinandco.co.uk/ ) Without his support, belief and encouragement the greetings cards would not be in existence. The greetings card market is a lot more complex than one might first imagine, and I really value his opinions and knowledge about the business – and its great to be able to have business meetings in the pub too! If you happen to be in Malvern, please pop in and say hello (and buy lots of stuff, including my cards and original artwork!).
Next is Mark who prints my cards for me over at The Whole Hog (http://www.thewholehog.biz/printer_worcester_contact.html) and also manages to get my artwork onto the computer and looking how it should, rather than my dodgy home photography sessions! This means that hopefully I will be able to have some decent images on the website next week. It’s great to be able to have a chat on the phone and nip down there to check out the progress, and that it’s OK for the toddler to toddle along too! Looking forward to dropping down my next batch of work for processing.
Then comes Popi at Mangojuice Gallery and Workshop – http://www.mangojuicegallery.com/ who is now stocking my greetings cards and limited edition prints alongside her wonderful jewelery and other great stuff from UK artists and designers.
Now I also have to thank all those at Bizart – you can find their blog on wordpress), especially Ruth. Jenny and Bridgette and the rest of the Pixley Group for kindness, fun and advice, my fab-a-lous neighbour Kirstin for gee-ing me up and emergency childcare, Crafty Mo for supplies (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Crafty-Mos/248848165182673), Zoe & Alan Coldicott for tea and craft fairs, Kirsty Stockwin for sound business advice, um, and I am sure hundreds of other people!
Anyway, the general point is that I have developed a rather large network of local help and support and I really do think this is the only way a small business venture can thrive – and at least if I don’t make any money, I have made some new friends – cue the Qwynnie style sobbing and gushing – will shut up now and leave you in peace! Lots of love my dahlings, mwah mwah.