It's been quite busy the last few weeks in that I've been setting up my little patch in a fantastic new retail venture in Altrincham, a market town in Cheshire not far from Manchester. It's a place I know well having grown up there, and I'm a very frequent visitor still having family ties in the area. Like many small towns the last few years have been difficult, but now there's a fantastic movement to reinvogorate the town and bring back local shoppers. No 16 The Downs can be found on the first floor of Traders Outlet on The Downs, and it provides the opportunity that a lot of crafters and small independent traders dream of- retail space at low risk.
So what can you find there? Well there is a fabulous selection vintage clothes & home wares, artists, and crafters plus a beautician and importantly a coffee shop with cakes (absolutely vital to any shopping trip). There is a real mix of independent traders and a very pleasant relaxed atmosphere to shop in.
My little patch that has been a bit of challenge to set up and stock- I'm use to setting up my stall at fairs and markets more or less on a weekly basis but this is a bit different. Firstly there is quite a bit more space and also I won't be on hand most of the time to keep it tidy- so planning it was important to make the most of the available space and incorporate some storage space. With the help of some magnolia paint, some Ikea shelving units and a very 'shabby chic' chest of drawers the space has evolved into my patch, though even after couple of weeks trading it's still a work in progress.
Ruby Gingham at the Crafty Little Cottage now has a home away from home at No16. It's great to have a place to display my work on a more permanent basis, and to be part of such an exciting venture.
So now there's is a lot of work to get the word out there and increase the awareness of the place. There has been a lot of coverage in the local press and last weekend No16 had its official launch. There was a tremendous response and the place was packed which was wonderful- here's hoping folk keep coming back and tell their friends. So fingers crossed...
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