I first met Anthony Temporal and his Wife Sara, the owners of Soake at the NEC Autumn fair last year, which is a large trade show for retailers to buy products. My husband, Dave, and I own our own art gallery in the little seaside town of Teignmouth in South Devon. Our art gallery sells limited edition prints and lifestyle products which have all been created by me, Laura. We are really proud of our gallery especially when we came runner up for Art Retailer of the Year last year in the UK* along with winning Devon’s Best Art Gallery**! We were exploring the Autumn fair for products we could sell in our gallery alongside my designs, but also to see if there were any companies we could collaborate with to create bespoke products that use my own designs and could be sold in our gallery.
As we trawled row after row of stands and companies Soake stood out to us the moment we set eyes on the products! The umbrellas were so unique, pretty and most importantly very high quality. Coupled with Anthony’s enthusiasm for his umbrellas, we knew it would make a fabulous fit for our own brand and we really wanted to work with Soake.
We were thrilled when Anthony said he would like to work with us on our own bespoke range. We set to work designing them and once they were ready Anthony loved our designs and asked to incorporate them into his core range, becoming a distributer of our brolly designs for Europe and the UK!
We have since launched the umbrellas in our gallery and the response has been phenomenal. There are a lot of smiling customers who are really enjoying the fun illustrations along with he really high quality design of the umbrella itself.
Collaborations like this one are so important for our brand, it’s always wonderful to bring out new products and give customers a reason to come into our shop. An umbrella might be functional, but there is no reason why it can’t be beautiful and fun!
*Fine Art Trade Guild