Sunshine & Salt
What is your business name and how did you come up with it?
Sunshine & Salt
I am a true beach lover and sun worshiper so the name was inspired by my love of the beach.
What products do you sell?
I sell quirky and unusual kitchen & home accessories.
What does a typical day look like?
I have two young children so every day is very different. I work my business around my family so much of my work is done during nap times & in the evening. Flexibilty is absolutey key to my daily routine.
What hours are you open?
My business is online so you can purchase anytime. I always strive to answer any customer queries as soon as I can.
How many people are behind your business? Who are they?
So there's me Marielle the designer, maker and owner. I I work with my talented sister the illustrator Aless Baylis on my prints. We have wanted to work together for ages and so when she moved to Brighton it was one of the first things we did!
In addition I work with my fantastic friend Claire from University who owns Etched Studio. She is lucky enough to own her own laser machine so she brings all my laser cutting ideas to life. Its fab working with her after all these years after university. It means a great deal to me to be able to collaborate with special & talented friends and family.
When did you launch?
What's your favourite part of running your business?
I love being able to design products that I want to see in my own home and sharing them with others. When people buy my designs it kind of blows my mind & makes me so happy.
What got you into the business?
I studied textile design at University so have always been creative. When I had my first child I wanted to start a small creative business that I could build around my family life. I have always been obsessed with homeware so it made sense that the products would be homeware based.
What makes your business unique?
Sunshine & Salt is fun, quirky & colourful. We strive to make mundane items exciting and beautiful by adding a Sunshine & Salt twist. Our products add a touch of fun to your home or party. Putting smiles on faces is what we're all about :)
Have you any previous experience or interest in this field?
I have a BA Hons in Textile Design.
Fun Fact - I have a piece of my knitted textile work is in the V&A archives. They made greetings cards of the piece that are sold all over the world.
Do you have a shop/website?
We are also on Etsy
Do you offer specialist services?
If people have any special requests, colour or size specifications then I am always up for looking into this for customers!
Where are you located? Does your location reflect your product?
I'm located in Brighton and the fun vibes of the city definitely shine through in my designs.
How do the seasons affect your business?
I bring out new products as and when I can at the moment. I am going to try and bring out more of a Christmas range this year.
Do you have any projects coming up?
I have just launched my new coloured poster hangers. They are available in sparkly gold, mint, yellow and navy so far but will be adding new colours soon.
So many customers who bought my prints asked me if I sold the hangers in my product photography which I didn't. So then I made it my mission to offer poster hangers but with a colourful twist.
They make prints really pop and look even more cool. I think they are my favourite product so far!
What has been your biggest achievement in your business?
Being featured in HomeStyle Magazine as 'Website of the Month'. That was such a lovely surprise and a pretty big deal to me.
Also being featured in Caboodle Magazine that meant a great deal as it's full of such inspiring makers work. It was an honour to be featured alongside so many of my favourite designers & makers.
What has been your biggest hurdle?
Getting products 'just right'. I have designed so many products that I have loved but haven't made it to the shop for various reasons. It's been a really steep learning curve in terms of product development.
I recently found that one of my products was copied by Ali Express which was a real kick in the teeth. I was truly gutted but my mum, who always sees the positives in everything, said to see it as flattering. I suppose in a weird way it is.
What do you think has made your business successful?
Having fun with it. I think the fun shows through in the products. Keeping social and supporting other small business's has helped us connect with other like minded people.
What advice would you give someone looking to start a business?
Do what you love, Be true to yourself and never give up.
It's really important to never give up, just keep adapting and evolving and you'll get there!
What is your price range of products?
£8.75 - £30
What are your popular products?
So far my most popular product has been the hanging vase. It makes a really lovely gift.
I think the poster hangers will be up there soon though.
Where do you see your business in 5 years' time?
Hopefully I will have a more established customer base which will allow me to spend more time on building the business and designing more fun products.
Tell us a little about you the owner?
I studied Textile Design at University and then worked in fashion Industry after that. I had a career in Fashion buying and then later went into Fashion Events producing catwalk shows and Awards ceremonies. I still work part time for an events company which I adore. We work on such a diverse range of brands & events, everyday is different and I love that.
If you had to describe your business in five words, what would they be?
Quirky, Fun, Bright, Patterned, Affordable
Who is your business aimed at?
Anyone who likes to inject colour and pattern into their lives.
What makes you stand out from your competitors?
I collaborate with talented people I love. My main inspiration is to make products that make people smile and I hope that shines through.
Have you got anything exciting coming up?
Not at the moment but I would like to do some local fairs in the future so watch this space.
I really strive to support other small business's and every Friday I do a #sharethesmallbusinesslove post on Instagram featuring a business I love or have just discovered. It all started when Monika from Mo Nat & Bag shared a lovely post about Sunshine & Salt a couple of months ago. It was such a lovely feeling that we both decided to try and do it every Friday. Since then I have really started to connect with loads more small business owners which is fabulous.
I have never met Monika but would love to one day. Her products are AWESOME, you should check her out!
Please help support this small business by following them on their social media!
Website – http://www.sunshineandsalt.co.uk/
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/Sunshineandsalt/
Twitter - https://twitter.com/sunshinesaltuk
Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/sunshinesaltuk/
Email - email@example.com
Telephone - 07879 625673