I feel like 2023 will stay with me for a while as it brought with it so much change. We are starting the year in a really good place with lots of plans to keep us busy, but it's good to celebrate the highlights of the last 12 months before we are consumed with 2024.
The BBC came calling!
VERY UNEXPECTEDLY! I was asked to give my perspective on December trade in a live broadcast by the BBC news channel on the day the ONS announced various important figures, graphs were involved and arrows pointing up and down! I think in hindsight they wanted more doom and gloom than I was able to give - turns out I'm less Eeyore & more Tigger than I thought!
Well not entirely - but the business survived without me for nearly a month whilst I escaped to New Zealand, and not just survived - we actually did really well in those weeks. The sky didn't fall in and Team Wonder struck exactly the right note of coping brilliantly but also seeming super relieved when I got back. Their Whatsapp group from this time titled 'The Mice Will Play' continues I believe!
We took a leap!
We got lucky with the opportunity to take on extra space in Crane St just round the corner to allow us to do lots of behind-the-scenes type things....and also workshops. It, of course, took more energy, time and money than anticipated. But when we asked for our customers help to make it happen we were bowled over by the response. The support we received made a real tangible difference to what we were able to do with updating the space, and we will always be hugely grateful. You can read more about the project HERE.
Sisterhood keeps on supporting
Launched on Black Friday 2022, our Sisterhood candle and tealights gathered real momentum this year, growing into one of our bestselling products. Since launch we have now raised over £2300 for our local womens charity My Sisters House. This makes us very very happy!
We brought a bit more creativity to the city!
Our workshops in our new studio space launched in the last quarter of the year. We were so happy to add a dash of creativity to Crane St and be able to share the expertise of some brilliant makers. The feedback has been so positive and our hope is to build on this wonderful start and offer a range of workshops throughout 2024 so please watch this space!
We didn't win the Chichester Christmast window competition but....
We did make it onto Mary Portas' winners list! Retail guru Mary shared some great content on instagram showcasing the 'Windows of Wonder' of the top London department stores. Alongside this independent retailers were asked to share their Christmas windows we of course obliged. We were beyond delighted to make the list of favourites from the windows submitted. Mary summarised the windows chosen as:
' A reminder that beautiful windows don't need big budgets, big teams and months of planning. As usual, it’s the care and love that counts. And yes, whilst sales are critically important at this time of year, the best examples put connecting with people first. From fostering community to creating a welcoming space.
These are the stores that have captured that for us. A celebration of amazing British retail.'
After a super-busy December with the whole team digging deep this was such a lovely accolade to receive.
Thank you so much to everyone who has supported us this year, we are so grateful for everything you have helped us achieve this year - we really wouldn't be here without you!