I began stocking We Made This Studio last year when I welcome some of their gorgeous scrunchies to some of my curated gift boxes and they literally FLEW out! Faster than any of us predicted!
We Made This Studio is an environmentally conscious accessories branding all their products are handmade in the UK.
The girls started the brand in December 2018, whilst living together in their final year of university. They have gone from selling cards at humble Christmas markets to designing their own beautiful collections of fabrics and accessories - to what is now a fully fledged business!
The brands style is bold and bright, using florals and colourful prints. They use fabrics and processes that are friendly to the environment and are conscious of keeping sustainability at the core of who they are, another reason why I love them!
So at the beginning of this year I began stocking a larger selection of We Made This Studio hair accessories and my wonderful virtual assistant Ella recently caught up with the girls to find out more about their brand:
Q: Can you tell us a bit about the journey of setting up We Made This Studio. What was your first market like? This must have been a really exciting moment for you!
A: We were busy designing and printing fabrics for our final collections at university and the thought of all our fabric samples being shoved away in storage once we'd graduated was a sad thought! We wanted to make our fabrics into things for people to use and enjoy. Our very first products were hair accessories made from our final collection fabrics - we still have some now and looking back at them we can certainly see how far we've come.
Our first market was SUCH a nerve-wracking experience, we didn't think we'd sell anything! Helen took part in a market in her local area in December 2018 (@makers.market.midlands.) We screen printed some Christmas cards and made some ceramic earrings which people seemed to like and she ended up chatting to the event organisers and other makers that we're still in touch with now. It was amazing to us that people were wanting to spend their money on the things we'd made - it was the first time that had happened for any of us!
Q: What is it like running your own business together?
A: Running a business between the three of us has been great so far, we're all quite laid back people and we all had the same vision for the brand so that's made it easier. The three of us also work part time so it's nice that we have each other to lean on and bounce ideas off when things get busy or someone's feeling uninspired. We all met while we were studying Textile Design at the University of Brighton and lived together in our final year. We've always said that we're friends before business partners!
Q: It's really positive that you are an environmentally conscious brand! What has this journey looked like, and are there areas of the business that you'd like to develop further to become more sustainable?
A: We’ve always been aware of the impacts of the fashion and consumer industries on the environment and the ethical implications of this, so we always knew that whatever we did it would need to be thoughtfully done with that in mind. We're really careful to source recycled, natural, organic and certified fabrics. Our satin is recycled PET polyester, we were surprised at how luxurious and soft it is despite being made from old plastic bottles! Any of the other fabrics we use are 100% natural cottons or silks - this is so that at the end of the life of the product it can biodegrade. It's so important to think about the impact of what you're designing after the end of its lifespan.
Q: What do you love the most about your community and customers and how do they inspire you?
A: We LOVE our customers so much!! We love how supportive and excited they are about the prints we design - we have quite a few repeat customers which makes us so happy!
We've noticed this about the creative community of small businesses on instagram too - everyone is so supportive of each other, it's so great to see other businesses grow and thrive.
Q: Do you each have an individual favourite product that you love?
A: Helen: I'm all about the scrunchies! They're SO SO practical but funky at the same time - I'm always wanting tie my hair up when I'm halfway through my day at work and they're perfect for that. They're so gentle on hair too because the satin they're made from is so soft. They're the product I tend to make the most and I loved initially working out the perfect sizes for the perfect amount of scrunch.
A: Ellie: My favourite is the knot headband - they're a classic and the first product we made properly with our first collection in March 2019. I also created the shape of them myself so I feel like it's a product I really nurtured!
A: Jess: For myself, I absolutely love our drawstring bags. They are close to my heart, from initial ideas to seeing them as final products and how they have developed is just a dream. I use them everyday as a bag tidy, keeping everything essential to hand, also perfect to keep my cameras protected and dust free too! It's a joy to rustle through my tote to find a fun, patterned drawstring bag every time.
Q: What would you say to someone who would love to start their own business, but perhaps is a little bit nervous about taking the plunge?
A: Make sure you're doing it because you love it - it's hard work to start your own business and can be a constant battle (you'll end up working way more than just 9-5 haha).
Don't put too much pressure on yourself - take a break and step back every once in a while, you'll come back with fresher and more inspiring ideas and avoid burning yourself out.Get involved in the small business community, everyone is so so nice and start small - it's easier to build something up than dive in straight away.