We’re starting the week with a fabulous business that we absolutely adore! The Makery is Bath’s answer to all things crafty, here you can learn anything from macrame, to curtain making, you name it they probably do it! Find out more about them in this week’s ‘Businesses of Bath’ feature!
Where are you based and what do you do?
Our HQ is in Bath, but we also have a team in London.
We teach people to make things! We run craft workshops, parties and events for brands and businesses. We also have a couple of craft books, and a range of product which is distributed across Europe and the US.
What inspired you to start your business?
After working in Film Marketing for 10 years, I decided I wanted a change of course, and really wanted to work for myself. I have always loved making things, and more importantly I’d been teaching my friends to make their own clothes all through school. 10 years ago when we started, there wasn’t too much in the way of contemporary craft brands, so we spent around a year planning The Makery, then found our perfect venue on Walcot Street and opened our doors. I can’t believe that was 10 years ago!
What do you love about running a business in Bath?
I love how the business has evolved, and how I’ve been able to develop it. We’ve had so many amazing opportunities come our way, so it’s been an exciting adventure so far. I’d never have dreamt I’d go on Dragon’s Den, have a range of product or have a team in John Lewis. It blows my mind. Then at the heart of the business, I absolutely adore getting in front of our customers and teaching workshops. Meeting people and watching them learn a new skill is what feeds me. We often have emails from wonderful people who have come on a workshop, and are then inspired to change their own path and introduce more creativity into their lives. Some of whom have quit their jobs and started their own creative businesses – it’s incredible.
You’ve got five minutes to grab a sandwich, where do you go?
Where’s your favourite place to book for a business lunch?
Definitely Le Vignoble in Milsom Place. The space is lovely – they have a private area if you need some privacy. The service is great, and food and wine are wonderful. I always leave having felt I’ve nipped over the channel for lunch.
Which bar do you head to after a tough day?
Tell us about another Bath business you love and why?
There are so many incredible entrepreneurs in our city, with wonderful businesses. Especially female-led businesses. Can I choose 3? I’d pick: Meticulous Ink because Athena is such delight and has built a strong brand with a lot of hard work: All her products are perfection. Melanie Giles Hair Dressing because Mel has magic powers! She seems to have a gazillion hours in the day; managing her empire and raising a lovely family with calm coolness. And Wool Bath because Laura has created the most wonderful creative haven for her customers, and is one of the kindest and brightest ladies I know.
What advice would you give to someone starting a business in the city?
Some practical advice! It’s a small and very friendly city, so allow yourself an extra 30 minutes if you need to get from one side to the other! As a business owner, you will get to know many of the wonderful folk in our city. You WILL bump into many of them when getting from A to B. You will talk, share stories and help each other. Things take longer! How wonderful is that, though! 🙂