News Article

Quirky Chairs: Breathing new life into the old

 

When Rachel lost her mum to cancer, her and family’s life was turned upside down.

Suffering with stress and anxiety, struggling to cope in work and at home and attempting to stay upbeat for her children began to take its toll; Rachel knew she needed a hobby to take her mind off things and help her to process the chaos going on around her. On a whim, she bought four chairs for £40 and got the most colourful paint she could find – and so the first four Quirky Chairs were born!

“I don’t think I ever set out to choose this as my business”, says Rachel.

“I feel Quirky Chairs was a hobby that I enjoyed, and it became a business organically after setting up an Instagram page and my work became so popular”.

Seven months into making Quirky Chairs a full-time business, Rachel reached out to Enterprise Hub for support. While she was a dab hand with the creation side of her business, she began to feel overwhelmed with the admin and paperwork aspects, and wasn’t sure how to prioritise. Through courses and regular meetings with her business advisor at The Women’s Organisation, Jo Mountfort, things became clearer, and Rachel began to make sense of the tasks she had to do to keep the business afloat.

2020 was undoubtedly a difficult year for businesses everywhere, but proved to Rachel that she had the ability to pivot her business model and diversify where she needed to. The pandemic forced Quirky Chairs to be made available nationwide and online, as well as offering online workshops on how to recycle and reuse what we have around the house.

Fast forward to today, and Quirky Chairs continues to thrive. Rachel currently has a studio in Make North Docks, where she is surrounded by other creatives as well as being central for customers to visit for collections and consultations. Her business journey has also begun to attract the attention of bloggers and influencers, which has helped her grow her online presence.

“I feel so proud of all that I’ve achieved so far. I started my business at the lowest point in my life and it really helped me to grow stronger as a person,” Rachel says.

“I’ve managed to keep my business going and growing during a pandemic by looking at how the needs of the nation had changed, by offering delivery and purchasing online, to painting children’s furniture to help with homeschooling.

“I’ve pivoted, watched and listened to trends to help me succeed.  People’s homes have never been more important, so by offering solutions to improve them and make them unique, I’ve been able to grow.”

To anyone out there thinking about starting a business, Rachel’s advice is simple: go for it!

“I would recommend that they contact The Women’s Organisation straight away to help with the background aspects of running a business.

“Running a business is hard work but if you’re passionate enough about your business to put in that hard work and those long hours then you will have the determination to make it work.”

You can find Quirky Chairs on Instagram and Facebook, and on their website:

www.quirkydesigncompany.co.uk

 

If you are thinking of starting a business in the Liverpool city region or have a new business under three years old, you can speak to the Enterprise Hub team via enterprisehub@thewo.org.uk or 0151 706 8113. Enterprise Hub is part funded by European Regional Development Fund and is free to access.

 

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