Tales of an Up-cycling Business

Creating SeaStarr Creative

Our friends over at SeaStarr Creative have kindly shared with us the journey they went on when start up their own business! Immy and Hannah’s beautiful products are all made with pre-loved and up-cycled materials – read below to hear more about their ethical approach to creating.

xxxxHi everyone! We are SeaStarr Creative; two recently graduated friends living in Cornwall who love getting creative and drinking copious amount of tea. We have given life to lots of my Grandad’s fifty-years-old fabric, transformed pre-loved clothing, and let’s not forget our love of all things pompom!

Our company began one rainy afternoon when Hannah and I became fed up of applying for jobs we didn’t really want. We decided we wanted to inspire ourselves and create something we really loved, so Hannah and I began – armed with a hand me down sewing machine and scraps of old curtain fabric – to make a cushion. How hard could it be?!

xxx.jpg
Our first attempt went surprisingly well. Overcome with excitement we decided to invest the little money we had into creating a brand. If we were going to commit to this we would need products to sell, and it was already apparent to us that we wanted to produce a variety of products.

 

Many cups of tea later we had decided on a list of products we wanted to create. This included:

  • cushions;
  • pompom wreaths;
  • drift wood boats;
  • and dsomething fish related!

Our next thought was how are we going to afford this? and the answer ended up being my Grandad.

My Grandad passed away many years ago, leaving my mum with boxes and boxes of fabric. This was material he had given to my Nan as presents to make herself dresses. However, my Nan never really liked any of the fabrics for dress making, so they have sat in lofts for almost fifty years.
xxHaving only been told this story I’d never actually seen the fabric, so I decided to set off on the eight hour journey back to my parents’ house to check it out.

It was as if my Grandad knew these fabrics were destined for wonderful things… the deeper I delved into the boxes, the more excited I became; velvet, corduroy, bold prints and most importantly; incredible colours!

Once back in Cornwall, Hannah and I got stuck into making and as it turns out; there is such a thing as beginner’s luck! A few wonky cushions later we had five cushions designs, three pompom wreath options and fish shoals taking over Hannah’s spare room.

We decided it was time to get selling, so we hit the Christmas markets. This was incredibly daunting as we loved our products but weren’t sure if other people would. Luckily, we sold a few pieces but what we took away from out first market was worth far more than money. The craft community was so welcoming, they offered advice and knowledge it would have taken us years to discover. The main message we got from the weekend was not to give up, and that if we believed in our brand then eventually other people would too.

xxxxx

So with a new-found confidence we survived the Christmas season, managing to make some money and not lose any fingers; making hundreds of pompoms a day turned out to be a military operation. The next step was to get business savvy – we needed to get clued up on social media, handling money and presenting ourselves to people (which Hannah hates). After many afternoons of convincing Hannah that people aren’t that bad we are successfully growing as a company, and have been getting our creative juices flowing by creating some exciting summery products!

Six months on from where we began Hannah and I are still friends, still managing to pay our rent and still working on expanding Sea Starr Creative. We will be adventuring around Cornwall to more market stalls in the near future so if you see us come and check us out!

To follow our journey, please feel free to look us up on Instagram, Facebook and Etsy.

 

About the Author: Immy and Hannah are both recent graduates from the university of Falmouth, and currently run SeaStarr Creative from the beautiful county of Cornwall.

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