Start where you are, use what you have, do what you can.
I thought I'd launch this new venture by introducing myself and what we do here at Thrive. You're probably here if you've visited one of our pop ups, have been following us on Instagram, or perhaps you received one of our lovely products as a gift! Hopefully you love supporting small business and want to learn a little bit more about our journey so far...
My background has always been creative, I have a foundation degree in Art and Design and a bachelors degree in Performance and Visual Arts (Theatre). Since returning to Suffolk I have been working on my own art practice and spent the recent years selling and exhibiting locally. Along the way, I've met some inspiring, skilled and dedicated artists and makers, full of passion and producing wonderful products.
Founded in 2019, ‘Thrive’ is an independent brand created to bring together some of the very best creative talent from across East Anglia. It was a little idea that kept poking its head up but very quickly getting pushed aside. A dream to have my very own little shop, a space to curate, style and share with others. But rent and business rates are expensive and as a self employed artist it was just something that seamed quite impossible. By chance, I came across an advertisement for a shop space available to rent in the courtyard of Helmingham Hall in Suffolk. A few emails later, a viewing, some design boards and pitching my idea, it all started to fall into place... and rather quickly. We only had a few weeks to turn everything around for our opening date, and I was also going on a short holiday that very same day... not good timing! I was absolutely overwhelmed by the support I received from all the artists and makers I approached to join and so grateful they trusted me and my vision. And so we opened our doors for the summer season, we discovered new things, we developed our vision, we were finding our way and we learnt a lot of lessons.
So, what is our vision...
Well, we are committed to supporting our local independent businesses and makers, showcasing the workmanship and talent of our fellow artists in the best way possible. We believe people are becoming more conscious about their shopping habits and offering products where you can learn about the maker and the process is something very special. We strive to offer quality, design-led items to fill your homes and hearts. Each of the artists and makers are selected through their quality and passion to bring you brilliant design.
We are passionate about giving back to the community, so everyone has their chance to thrive. In 2019 we supported shelter charity with a fundraising giveaway and backed one of our makers donating her profits to East Anglia's Children's Hospice. As we grow our business we will be thinking about more ways we can make a difference. Together we are better, and I hope this venture can help all of our local talent to grow and flourish, to create a community for both makers and shoppers.
As the Summer season came to an end, plans were only just beginning for our very first Christmas at Thrive! We returned to Helmingham Hall for a magical few weeks during their illuminated gardens trail... Christmas magic and festive cheer was definitely in the air! We also took up our second venue at the historic building and home of Arlingtons Bar in Ipswich. A very busy two weeks ensued as I juggled the two venues, a launch party, late night shopping evenings, a group art exhibition and a weekend art market thrown in for good measure!
There have of course been plenty of ups and downs, but I can't wait to see where we can go next! I think it's all about hard work, belief in your vision, seeking out opportunities for yourself and grabbing onto them when they come along.
I hope you continue to follow our journey and we'd love to hear from you if you have any questions or comments.