International Women’s Day – Interview with 3 British Producers

Today is International Women’s Day so we thought it would be fantastic to chat to 3 women in business who are all producers of British products. We are lucky enough to work with all 3 women here at The GBX.

Charlotte from Lottie Shaw’s

We spoke to Charlotte from Lottie Shaw’s. Lottie Shaw’s produce seriously good Yorkshire Parkin and a range of fantastic baked goods.

What does International Women’s Day mean to you?
International women’s day to me is a celebration of all the good and positive changes women make across the world everyday.

What prompted you to set-up Lottie Shaw’s?
Having been brought up in our family bakery business it wasn’t until years later when I was working in FMCG company Diageo that I then had the opportunity to acquire the family business with my husband. We honestly thought it would give us a better work life balance and the flexibility to have a family and be able to spend time with them. I always loved our Yorkshire Parkin recipe and I packaged this for a different market (the independent retailers) from there Lottie Shaw’s was born!

What is your most popular product?
Yorkshire Parkin cake closely followed by our Yorkshire Parkin Biscuits both have just won Great Taste Awards.

What is the hardest thing about about running a business?
Spinning all the plates and managing my time I wish there was more hours in a day!

What is the most rewarding aspect about running a business?
Baking great products that our customers love and employing over 30 members of the team.

What has been your greatest achievement?
Raising two beautiful children with my lovely husband whilst growing and sharing the love of great Yorkshire baking and surrounding myself by great people who help us to do this.


Kate Moby from Kate Moby

We spoke to Kate from Kate Moby (pictured). Kate Moby’s beautiful hand drawn designs mean that everyone can enjoy a piece of the outdoors in their homes.

What does International Women’s Day mean to you?
It’s a day to remember that we’re all more similar than we are different, as well as being wonderfully diverse. We can achieve more when we spend time building each other up rather than feeling in competition with each other.

What prompted you to set-up Kate Moby?
When I graduated a number of years ago, I was adamant that I wanted a full time design job. Unfortunately it coincided with the recent recession, and the first things to dry up as far as I could tell were the creative roles. After endless rejection letters or most of the time just no response to applications, it was pretty tough to keep applying for things.

I decided to change tack and started applying for non-paying internships in a variety of roles and freelance short-term opportunities. I also started just playing about with product ideas to keep myself occupied in between these. Little did I know that this time period was probably more important than the previous three years of University. Skills I learnt in these wide-ranging environments are the things that I use every single day. Giving myself space to try things out and just “have a play” meant that I’ve organically developed my ideas that have enabled me to create a design led product range that seems to be picking up speed all the time. I couldn’t have seen that coming.

What is your most popular product?
My Inky Animals always seem to outsell my minimalist Inky Botanical range, with a few characters like my Hedgehog and Mallard being particular favourites, very often on a card or as a framed print.

What is the hardest thing about running a business?
The reality of how little time you get to be creative! I’m much more likely to be spending my time sorting emails or packing orders or dealing with suppliers.

What is the most rewarding aspect about running a business?
I do enjoy wearing lots of hats. Often the amount of work you put in is directly related to how well everything goes, so being a one-person band and being completely in charge of my own day is very rewarding.

What has been your greatest achievement?
Being able to live off “drawing and colouring in!” My husband and I are both self employed doing creative roles and we bought our first house a couple of years ago. That felt like a pretty amazing achievement. Every time someone buys one of my products I feel an amazing sense of achievement and gratitude that someone wants what I have created in their own home or for their loved ones. That feeling never gets old.



Jen from Join

What does International Women’s Day mean to you?
To me, International women’s day means recognising the strengths and talent of women all over the world. We can all connect whether it be overcoming a mutual challenge, having something in common on a personal level or highlighting a professional achievement.
What prompted you to set-up Join?
It all started when my fiancé gifted me a candle making class! With experience in brand, sales and management, I was tired of the lack of consideration for the environment and wanted to launch a creative company focused on good old fashioned customer service.
What is your most popular product?
That’s a tough one. A lot of customers love our Hedgerow and Bay + Rosemary candles.
What is the hardest thing about running a business?
The long hours and that there are often not enough of them in the day!
What is the most rewarding aspect about running a business?
Meeting and working with amazing, inspirational people from all walks of life.
What has been your greatest achievement?
 Winning a “Sustainability in Design” Eco Choice award in New York in February 2019.

 

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