In 2020 I was lucky enough to get a small space in Newquay Central Post Office. They already had a couple of artists in the shop and after a couple of attempts the owner agreed to see some of my work.
The meeting was successful and I had my very first shelf in a shop. I didn't have a clue what I was doing, but it was exciting! I didn't have much stock!
Until then all I had really done is create original art, my prints and gift experience was pretty limited to print-on-demand online websites. I had a small handful of prints in frame purchased from a combination of Photobox and Dunlem. I was pretty happy with how they turned out. Also pleased with the square greeting cards and coasters. However the keyrings and magnets...well let's say I didn't continue with those in the same format.
First Half 2021
Covid slowed things down, but I started to research and experiment with other printed gift ideas and some hand-made gifts.
By the start of 2021 I had purchased a card rack and expanded my range, I focused quite a lot on hand-painted giftware; magnets and glassware which sold really well, but took up so much time to make.
Second Half 2021
In the second half of 2021 I painted some surfers onto one of the baubles for our Christmas tree, it looked quite pretty so I did a few more, purchased a 'tree' display stand and the baubles took off. I would even say they are still my best sellers to date!
As we go through 2022 I've got more shelf space, more products and more ideas! It's a careful balance to ensure I can make gifts that make sense from a materials cost and time point of view. I'm always experimenting and refining my collection. That balance between printed and hand-made, practical and pretty, a memory cherished souvenir versus a more luxury unique gift.
This year I'm prepping for Christmas early; I've already painted quite a few baubles, I've got some gift packs coming and a small handful of different designs - watch this space!